The Best Connecticut-Style Lobster Rolls

Connecticut-Style Lobster Rolls
Connecticut-Style Lobster RollsMatt Taylor-Gross

Buying fresh, live lobster and good-quality buns will result in the most delicious lobster rolls. Look for live crustaceans from Maine that have all their claws and antennae intact, and toast fresh, squishy buns on a griddle with butter before filling and serving.

What You Will Need

Connecticut-Style Lobster Rolls
Buying fresh, live lobster and good-quality buns will result in the most delicious lobster rolls. Look for live crustaceans from Maine that have all their claws and antennae intact, and toast fresh, squishy buns on a griddle with butter before filling and serving.

Ingredients

  • 3 live Maine lobsters, about 1 1/2 lb. each
  • About 10 black peppercorns
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 12 tsp. sea salt, divided
  • 4 split-top buns, such as hot dog buns
  • 1 stick (4 oz.) unsalted butter
  • Sweet paprika
  • 8 medium slices bibb lettuce, or similar
  • Finely chopped fresh chives, for garnish

Instructions

  1. In a large pot, add enough water to reach about 1 inch up the sides of the pan. Add the peppercorns, bay leaf, and 1 teaspoon sea salt, and bring to a boil. Add the lobsters and cover the pot. Cook until the shells are bright red and the meat is just cooked through, about 8 minutes.
  2. Remove the lobsters and let cool slightly, then crack open the claws, tails, and knuckles and remove the meat; rinse under warm water as needed to remove any impurities. Cut into 1-inch pieces and reserve. (You can discard the carapaces and shells, or save for stock.)
  3. On a large griddle or cast iron skillet over medium heat, rub ½ tablespoon of the butter over the surface to thinly coat. Add the buns and cook, turning occasionally, until all sides are lightly toasted, about 4 minutes total.
  4. In a small saucepan, melt the remaining butter and stir in ½ teaspoon sea salt and a generous pinch of paprika. Turn off the heat and add the reserved lobster meat; stir to coat.
  5. Line each of the rolls with two leaves of lettuce. Spoon the lobster among the prepared rolls. Top with more paprika to taste, and garnish generously with chives. Serve immediately.