Lobster Tacos with Bacon “Tortillas” and Smoked Corn SalsaSteven Raichlen
Other Recipes from Episode 404: Influential Grilling
- Wood-Grilled Chorizo with Pickled Onions, Cheese, and Chimichurri
- Bacon Apple Crisp, Smoked Whipped Cream and Caramel Drizzle
Recipe courtesy of Scott Thomas, grillinfools.com
Lobster Tacos with Bacon “Tortillas” and Smoked Corn Salsa
- Yield: Makes 3 to 4 but can be doubled
- Method: Grilling in the embers, plus indirect grilling and/or smoking
For the corn salsa:
- 2 jalapeño peppers
- 1 red bell pepper
- 1/2 red onion
- 3 ears sweet corn, husked, kernels cut off the cob
- Coarse salt (sea or kosher) and freshly ground black pepper
- Extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
- 2 teaspoons white wine vinegar, or more to taste
- Juice of 1/2 lime
For the bacon weave:
- 1 pound smoked bacon, chilled
- Your favorite sweet barbecue rub
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
For the lobster:
- 3 lobster tails, in the shell, thawed if frozen, split down the back
- Your favorite Cajun rub
- Sour cream
- Thinly sliced scallions
You'll also need:
- 1 Taco form; taco holder; pizza cutter; rimmed sheet pan; cast iron skillet; aluminum foil (optional); 2 chunks smoking wood, or 1 cup wood chips, soaked in water to cover for 30 minutes, then drained
1: Set up your grill for indirect grilling and heat to medium (about 350 degrees). Brush or scrape the grill grate clean and oil with vegetable oil.
2: If using a charcoal or wood-fired grill, lay the peppers and onion directly in the coals and char, turning frequently with tongs, until blistered and dark, 3 to 5 minutes. If using a gas grill, grill the peppers and onion on the grill grate until blistered and dark, 8 to 10 minutes.
3: Remove the peppers and onion from the grill grate and let cool. Stem the jalapeños and scrape off most of the burnt skin. Seed if you prefer a milder salsa. Stem and seed the red pepper and scrape off most of the burnt skin. Dice. Peel any charred layers off the onion half and dice. Add the peppers and onion to a large mixing bowl and set aside.
4: In the meantime, make the bacon weave on a rimmed sheet pan. (Foil the pan first, if desired, for easier clean-up.). Find directions here. Aim for a size about 8- by 8-inches.
5: Replace the grill grate if grilling over a charcoal or wood fire. Replenish the fuel, if needed.
Place the sheet pan with the bacon weave on the grill grate and grill for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the bacon is golden brown but still pliant.
6: Season the lobster meat with the Cajun seasoning and add to the grill. Like the bacon weave, the lobster tails will take about 30 minutes to cook. Remove them from the grill when the meat is opaque and cooked through. (Do not overcook.)
7: Place the corn kernels in a 10-inch cast iron skillet. Season with salt and pepper and drizzle with a couple of tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil. Place on the grill grate. If desired, add a chunk of smoking wood chunks or chips to the coals or your grill’s smoker box. Remove the skillet from the grill once the kernels are tender (15 to 20 minutes) and let cool. Add to the peppers and onions in the mixing bowl, and stir in the chili powder, cumin, vinegar, and lime juice. Taste, adjusting the seasonings, oil, and vinegar as needed. Set aside.
8: Using a pizza cutter, slice the still-warm bacon weave into fourths and drape over a taco form until crisp. (These will be your taco shells.) Slice or dice the lobster tails into bite-size pieces.
To build the tacos, divide the lobster meat among the bacon shells and top with sour cream and scallions. Serve with the corn salsa.