Chef Mitchell Kaldrovich of the Inn by the Sea in Cape Elizabeth, Maine, creates a modern-day lobster roll that’s still true to its roots. By Lisa Rogak
There are several variations on the theme—more mayo, less celery—but sometimes you just want your surroundings to be a bit more posh and the lobster roll to be just a tad different. That’s exactly what you’ll find in the lobster roll created by chef Mitchell Kaldrovich of the Inn by the Sea in Cape Elizabeth, Maine.
When conjuring up this version of the age-old dish, his aim was to take the best Maine lobster and prepare it as simply as possible. “I like to keep it light and healthy by using fresh herbs from the garden, so that the Maine flavors speak for themselves,” he says. His secret? “A dollop of lemon mayo.” Plus, he serves it up on a soft brioche-style roll—baked fresh at the Inn every day—instead of the bulky hot dog buns that are the dish’s trademark.
Though Kaldrovich was raised in Argentina, he feels completely at home in Maine, where he lives on the edge of a cornfield and has his own vegetable garden. “I love the abundance of fresh seafood that’s available on a daily basis and being surrounded by farmers’ fields,” he says. “This allows me to create seasonal menus that draw on the fresh produce and seafood that are locally available.”
Maine Lobster Rolls serves 4–6
4 c. cooked lobster meat, cut into bite-size pieces from five half-pound lobsters
⅓ c. low-fat mayonnaise
2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
2 tbsp. fresh chopped herbs: chives, tarragon, and/or parsley
Salt & pepper to taste
4 Sea Glass Lobster Buns
Maine potato chips
To cook lobsters: Fill a large stockpot three-quarters full of salted water—one tablespoon per quart of water—and bring to a boil. Submerge lobsters completely and cover. Cook approximately 9-10 minutes, until shell is red. Drain from water. Remove the claws and put them back in the pot for another three minutes. Drain, cool, remove meat from shell, and cut into chunks. To make the salad: Gently combine the lobster meat with the lemon juice, mayo, and herbs in a large bowl. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Cut each bun in half, lightly grill them on the inside, and spoon in lobster salad. Serve immediately with handmade Maine potato chips.
Sea Glass Lobster Buns
25 g. fresh yeast
2 tsp. sugar
¼ c. water, lukewarm
500 g. bread flour
12½ g. salt
50 g. sugar
1 small egg
50 ml. canola oil
150 ml. water
Combine yeast, sugar, and water in measuring cup and let foam for 20 minutes. In large bowl, mix flour, salt, and sugar. In separate bowl, stir egg, oil, and water together. Add the yeast mixture and egg mixture to the flour and combine to form a smooth dough. Add more flour as needed. Cover with plastic wrap and let double in size at room temperature, about 45 minutes. Cut the dough into three-ounce portions. Roll each one into a “football” and place on an oiled cookie sheet. With a very sharp knife, slash each bun about ½-inch deep at a 45-degree angle. Bake in a preheated 350-degree oven for 15-20 minutes, or until nicely brown.