It is that time again – Florida Lobster Season is up and running and the only thing that rivals the fun of tickling a few “bugs” into your net is eating them after you hit the dock. I don’t know about you but for me, lobster without butter is a sad, sad thing. So, I’ve come up with a twist on the tried and true “boil ’em in water – dip ,em in butter” approach using my trusty kettle bbq grill and butter…. spicy key lime butter, that is.
Note: We couldn’t contain ourselves this month so we’ve pulled together three great recipes for you to try out on that next batch of Spiny Florida Lobster. After you’ve perused the tasty recipe offered here, be sure to check out Lora’s Abacos Spicy Florida Lobster Bites with Tangy Blue Cheese Dip and Amy’s Florida Lobster Roll w/Key Lime Avocado Aioli
Grilled Florida Lobster and Shrimp Ingredients
- Spiny Lobster: (2) 8 oz. each
- Florida Wild Caught Shrimp: 10 large
- Olive Oil: 1 Tbsp.
Spicy Key Lime Butter Ingredients
- Key Lime juice:5-6 limes
- Key Lime Zest: 2 limes
- Butter: 8 Tbsp.
- White Pepper: To Taste
- Salt: To Taste
- Black Pepper: To Taste
- Garlic: 1 Clove
- Dried Chiles: 3-6 or as your love of heat demands
Assembling The Spicy Key Lime Butter
Soften the butter in advance of getting started. Add all of the ingredients listed and mix together thoroughly. Set aside for prep and cooking of the crustaceans. I make two batches of the butter. One for the lobster and one for the shrimp.
The “spicy” comes from your choice of peppers. While I used dried and smoked hot (always hot for me) peppers in this version of the dish I recommend you experiment a little. I have used fresh hot peppers, charred hot peppers and dried/smoked hot peppers. there is a wide range of flavor and heat profiles that work in this butter.
Prepping The Crustaceans
Lobster: Start by flipping the bug onto its back (shell down), fanning the tail a bit and inserting the blade if your knife approximately an inch or so, enough to get the tip over the hard shell at least a little. Press down until the hard shell is cut. Turn the lobster onto its stomach (shell up) and starting at the nipped tail, cut the shell its full length. With your knife, cut the flesh just to the lower membrane (the belly) and no more. Brush olive oil on the exposed flesh. Now, the little fellow is butterflied and ready for the next step.
Shrimp: Mix half of the Spicy Key Lime Butter in with the shrimp half an hour ahead of grilling and let them set.
Grilling The Crustaceans
On a grill running at medium to medium high heat, and directly over the coals/burners, start by grilling the lobster – flesh side down. Cook for 4-5 minutes then turn to shell side down. Pile on the softened butter and cook an additional 6-7 minutes.
At the same time you turn the lobster, start the shrimp on the grill. Place directly over the heat and cook on one side for 3 minutes, turning to cook an additional 3 minutes.
Pull everything from the grill at the same time and head for the dinner table.
Some folk like to ice their shrimp for an easier peel and eat experience. Not me. I like them warm, straight off the grill. And, for an extra treat, if you are making up some cocktail sauce for the shrimp be sure to substitute/add some fresh key lime juice in the mix.
And, then we eat. Enjoy your “bugs” this season and don’t forget to try out the other recipes mentioned earlier in the article.
Bon Appétit and Tight Lines, Captain.