A recipe is merely words on paper; a guideline, a starting point from which to improvise. It cannot pretend to replace the practiced hand and telling glance of a watchful cook. For that reason feel free to stir your own ideas into this dish. When you cook it once, it becomes yours, so personalize it a bit. Add more of an ingredient you like or less of something you don’t like. Try substituting one ingredient for another. Remember words have no flavour, you have to add your own!
2 large lobsters
1 cup 35% cream
1-28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
1-750 ml bottle white wine
2 onions chopped
4 cloves garlic
1 tablespoon prepared horseradish
2 bay leaves
Salt and Pepper
1 box penne pasta
Put a large pot over high heat and add about 2 cups of water. Bring to a boil and add the lobsters. Cover and let steam for about 8 minutes per pound. When they are done, remove the meat from the tail, knuckles and claws and reserve.
Smash the shells with the back of a knife or with a hammer (wrapping the shells in a kitchen towel reduces splatter). Put them into a large saucepot and add the cream, tomatoes, wine, onions, garlic and bay leaves.
Simmer for 1.5 hours, until the liquid has reduced by half and is reddish brown in colour.
Strain the sauce into a clean pot and add the horseradish. Check for seasoning and add salt and pepper to taste.
Serve the sauce with the reserved lobster.
As seen on Chef at Home
This is one of the great beef stews of the world. It's a uniquely Hungarian dish that's half way between a soup and a stew. While in Hungary, I learned a couple of things. First, that every cook has a different version of this recipe and second, that everyone believes their version is the most authentic. So to me, that means all versions are authentic as long as they contain Hungarian flavours.
This recipe is dedicated to the memory of Ann Szemba, my Hungarian friend who traveled with me to Hungary and taught me this dish.
Because ham is so versatile, our Sunday ham tradition means a different flavour every week. Baked ham is easy to prepare, and easy to personalize with the flavour of your choice because it goes so well with so many ingredients, including the ten variations detailed here.