These “lobster” rolls are made with Langostino tail meat. Langostino is not really a lobster, and costs significantly less. Its flavor and texture are very similar, and restaurants sometimes substitute Langostino to offer lobster-like dishes at a lower price. Some species of langostino look somewhat like a flattened lobster, while others resemble a prawn. What we call Langostino in the US is the meat of the squat lobster, which is neither a true lobster nor a prawn, but more closely related to porcelain and hermit crabs.
I love lobster rolls, having first enjoyed them on the East Coast when visiting family. Sweet lobster in a light lemony dressing on a soft roll with a side of slaw is about as New England as it gets. The recipe here uses langostino for cost savings, but can be made with regular lobster if that is your preference. If I want to splurge, I’ll make this with real, fresh lobster.
For a twist I added spring peas. They are purely optional and may offend a lobster roll purist, so leave them out if they are not your thing. I like their fresh sweet taste, and happened to have an abundance of them on hand. They bring additional texture and flavor, but if they are not available or desired, the recipe is delicious without them.
3 Cups cooked Langostino or Lobster meat 1/2 Cup Spring Peas, shelled (optional) 1/3 - 1/2 Cup Mayonnaise 2 Tablespoons Fresh Lemon Juice 2 Tablespoons Fresh Chives, minced 2 Tablespoons Fresh Italian Parsley, minced 1 Teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning 1/8 Teaspoon Cayenne Pepper (optional) Salt and Pepper to Taste 6 Sausage Rolls, Hot Dog Buns or other soft sandwich rolls, Split 2 - 4 Tablespoons of butter
- Combine langostinos or lobster, peas, mayonnaise, lemon juice, chives, parsley, Old Bay, and cayenne if desired, in a mixing bowl.
- Taste the salad and adjust seasonings; adding salt and pepper if desired.
- If not serving immediately, cover and refrigerate salad; it will store well for several hours if needed before moving on to next step.
- Butter preferred rolls and toast, butter side down, on a preheated grill or in a skillet on the stove top, working in batches. Alternately, you could place in a toaster oven and toast with butter side up on a bagel setting. Toast until inside of bun is a golden brown.
- Fill each bun with about 1/2 cup of the langostino or lobster salad.
- Serve immediately.
These sandwiches can be used as either a main course or an appetizer. Slicing the filled rolls into three pieces will make a nice appetizer sized serving.
I initially frowned on the use of hot dog buns when experimenting with this recipe, but they have the right balance of flavor and texture so they don’t overpower the delicate texture and flavor of the filling.
Use the freshest ingredients possible, this sandwich has well balanced flavors and fresh juice and herbs are the key.