How To Buy and Store Lobster

By nicko, Mar 21, 2014 | |
  1. About a year ago I was asked to teach a class on how to buy, prepare lobster and this article and others to follow are a result of the notebook I put together for the class. This is part one of the class. Part two is    I hope they are useful to members of


    Best way to buy Lobster: Alive

    There are three ways to purchase lobster:
    • Fresh
    • Frozen
    • Cooked
    Important: Warning: Never buy raw uncooked lobster. All shellfish spoils rapidly once it dies.

    When buying lobster, females are preferred because you get the roe (the eggs). The roe tastes quite good and is often used when preparing lobster. To learn how to tell the difference between a male and female lobster see part two of this series:    

    Best Time To Buy Lobster: Springtime

    Important: When buying lobsters for cooking at home buy them either one day before or on the day you plan to cook them. Never buy them more than a day early.

    Lobster sizes:

    Chickens    1 pound
    Quarters    1 ½ pounds
    Select1 ½ - 2 ½ pounds
    Jumbo    More than 2 ½ pounds
    Culls    Whole lobsters with only one claw
    Soft ShellsLobsters that have recently molted. Meat is spongy and you should avoid them.

    Storing Lobster

    Best way to store lobster: Refrigerated

    • Lobsters are usually sold in a box keep this to store them.
    • If the fish monger has seaweed (pictured right), ask them for some to wrap the lobster in. This will keep them fresher.  A good substitute is wet newspaper.
    • Never submerge them in water this will kill them. 
    • Do not store a lobster for more than one day before you prepare it. It is recommended you purchase them no more than 6-8 hours before you prepare it if possible.
    Tip. If you do get seaweed keep it and use it when presenting your lobster. It makes a stunning effect.

    Continue reading on Lobster in the next article:    

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