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Grilled Drunken Lobsters With Papaya Avocado Salad

  • Yield: 4 servings


  • 4 (1 1/2- to 2-pound) Pacific or rock lobsters
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil, plus 2 tablespoons
  • 3 poblano chiles
  • 1/4 cup chopped white onion
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup lime juice
  • 1 ounce tequila
  • Papaya-Avocado Salad
  • Sprigs fresh cilantro, garnish


  • Preheat a grill to medium-high heat.
  • Fill a large stockpot three-fourths full with salted water and bring to a boil. Plunge the lobsters headfirst, 2 at a time, into the boiling water and cook, covered, for 3 minutes. (They will be only partially cooked.) Transfer with tongs to a large bowl filled with ice water to cool. Place on a cutting board and with a sharp knife, cleanly cut the lobster in half lengthwise from the head to the tail. (If female, reserve the roe for another use; discard or reserve the bodies for another use.)
  • In a skillet, heat the oil over high heat. Add the chiles, and cook, stirring, until they turn a light color, 4 to 5 minutes, being careful not to let them burn. Transfer the chiles to a cutting board until cool enough to handle. Add the onions, garlic, and salt and cook, stirring, until soft, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat.
  • Trim and discard the chile stems. Cut the chiles into pieces and transfer to a blender. Add the onions, garlic, salt, oil, and lime juice, and process on high speed to make a smooth sauce. Add the tequila through the feed tube while the machine is running and process until smooth. Transfer to a small saucepan.
  • Brush the lobster shells lightly with olive oil and place, shell side down, on the grill. Spoon the pepper tequila mixture onto the lobster meat and grill, basting occasionally, until the juices are bubbly and the meat is opaque, about 8 minutes.
  • Remove from the grill and transfer to plates. Serve with the papaya-avocado salad and garnish with cilantro.