Lobster Tail Stir Fry with Indian Chinese Manchurian Masala

Lobster Tail Stir Fry with Indian Chinese Manchurian Masala Recipe

If you're ever attended an Asian wedding, you've probably witnessed all the seafood dishes at the occasion. Since Chinese New Year is coming up very soon, I wanted to share with you a festive dish that you could prepare. I added my own twist since my home is so multicultural. My husband Lulu's family is from India, so I prepared a garam masala-flavored dry gravy to flavor luxurious lobster tails

Lobster tails were deep-fried first, then sauteed in a black bean garlic sauce and a generous amount of ginger and garam masala. This finger-licking-good seafood dish was meant to be eaten with a large crowd, but since the beginning of this year, baby Aria and I are the last ones who are not vegetarian, so I called my cousins to join in the fun!

Ingredients

Yields: 8 servings

8 whole fresh lobsters, cleaned and separated
2 cups vegetable oil
2 shallots, thinly sliced
4 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons fresh ginger, finely chopped
¼ cup black bean garlic sauce, finely chopped
1 tablespoon chili garlic sauce
¼ cup hoisin sauce
4 tablespoons tapioca starch
¼ teaspoon turmeric
2 fresh Serrano green chiles
¼ teaspoon homemade garam masala
1¼ teaspoons kosher salt, to taste
2 teaspoons freshly cracked pepper, to taste
juice of 1 lime
¼ cup cilantro, chopped


Directions

Gather the lobster tails (prepped, see tips) in one large mixing bowl and reserve the lobster brains (from inside the main head shells) separately in another small bowl. Pat dry. Add black pepper and turmeric. Toss well and set aside for 15 minutes.

In a wok, heat the oil. Add the shallots and cook for about 3-4 minutes until slightly golden and fragrant. Transfer to a plate, leaving as much shallot-flavored oil in the wok as possible.

Dredge the lobster with tapioca flour using a strainer and immediately fry the lobster pieces in 3 batches, adding a teaspoon of salt to the wok. Jiggle the pan to make sure the lobster doesn't stick to the bottom and is totally coated with oil and slightly crispy. Remove and discard the oil, leaving about 3 tablespoons left in the wok. Add the ginger and garlic and cook until fragrant. Add reserved lobster brain. Cook for 1 minute, then add the black bean sauce, chili garlic sauce and a bit of salt. Return the lobster tails to the wok. Stir fry until evenly distributed.

In a small bowl, dissolve the remainig 2 tablespoons tapioca starch in 4 tablespoons water. Pour the liquid, and the hoisin sauce into the wok and scrape the solids at the bottom of the pan. Constantly toss the lobster to ensure each piece is coated with the gravy. As soon as all the liquid evaporates, add ½ cup of water and the cilantro. Cover and cook for about 8-10 minutes, stirring often. The lobster meat should be white and opaque and the liquid should be evaporated as well. Do not over-cook the lobster or the meat will be dry! Uncover and add the reserved shallots. Toss the lobster and cook for another 2-3 minutes. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper and a drizzle of lime juice.

Transfer to a large serving platter.

Serve immediately.

Bon appétit!


Tips

It's important to open the lobster tails slightly before cooking so the gravy penetrates into the meat. I use kitchen shears to open the inner shell.

For this dish, it's important to always keep the temperature of the stove at the highest setting. The higher the temperature, the better. If some solids start sticking to the bottom of the pan, add a little water.

Published By: Jacqueline Pham on January 14, 2014.


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