Yesterday, I told you about the first three courses in our family’s Christmas dinner. Today I’m focusing on the main course, which consisted of lobster tails, potatoes and green beans.

I noted yesterday that I wanted a main course meat that didn’t require hours and hours of baking, but I also wanted something that was a bit different from what my family might typically have. After some thinking, TM and I decided upon lobster tails. We also found a recipe where you bake them in tin foilt instead of boiling them, and that was a nice way to ensure they were all ready at the same time.

The potatoes were very good, but I got the timing off and they weren’t really done when I served them. We ate them anyway, but they could have been better. I had never heard of hasselback potatoes before, and just now learned with a web search that they were named for the Stockholm restaurant that first served them. They are easy to make but come off looking “gourmet.” I think you also could be creative with the toppings and adapt them to other meals.

I got both the lobster in tin foil and the hasselback potatoes recipe from the FineDinings website that featured a lobster dinner menu. Everyone in the family ate the lobster except the youngest nephew (again!). We had lobster tails that were about 5 oz each and we baked them for 20 minutes, which was perfect.

This is the 2nd in a series of what we had for Christmas Dinner. Here’s a link to yesterday’s post:

Catch them off guard with 5-course dinner — Christmas Dinner Series (part 1 of 3)

Green beans

2 pounds green beans, ends trimmed

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

3 tablespoons butter

2 large garlic cloves, minced

1 teaspoon red pepper flakes

1 tablespoon lemon zest

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

 

Blanch green beans in a large stock pot of well salted boiling water until bright green in color and tender crisp, roughly 2 minutes. Drain and shock in a bowl of ice water to stop from cooking.

Heat a large heavy skillet over medium heat. Add the oil and the butter. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes and saute until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the beans and continue to saute until coated in the butter and heated through, about 5 minutes. Add lemon zest and season with salt and pepper.

Hasselback Potatoes

Servings: 8

8 russet baking potatoes

5 tablespoons melted butter,

1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated

1/2 cup fine breadcrumbs (I used whole wheat)

1 teaspoon paprika

Kosher salt, to taste

2 teaspoons fresh parsley, minced for garnish

 

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Peel potatoes and place in old water while each potato is prepared to prevent them from turning brown.

Cut and discard a thin lengthwise slice from the bottom of each potato so they will sit flat on a cutting board. Place two long handled wooden spoons or chopsticks lengthwise on both sides of potato to prevent knife from cutting entirely through the potato. Holding chopsticks or wooden spoons against potato, make crosswise cuts 1/8 inch apart cutting down to chopsticks; slices should remain connected at the bottom. Return potato to bowl of cold water while preparing the remaining potatoes.

When ready to bake, drain potatoes and pat dry. Place cut side up in a shallow greased baking pan, brush with 2 tablespoons melted butter.

In a food processor puree grated Parmesan cheese, breadcrumbs, paprika, salt and the remaining 1 tablespoon butter; spread on cut potatoes pressing to adhere. Cover baking pan with foil and bake at 450 degrees for 30 minutes. Remove foil and bake an additional 15 minutes. Remove from oven, drizzle potatoes with the remaining 2 tablespoons melted butter, add parsley and serve.

Easy Lobster Tails in Foil

Lobster tails

Butter

Lemon juice

Paprika

Salt and Pepper

 

Thaw the lobster tails. Cut away the membrane with scissors. Loosen meat from shell with fingers. Place each tail on a piece of foil (large enough to wrap generously). Sprinkle with salt, pepper, paprika, lemon or lime juice and dot with butter. Fold foil over, sealing the ends so the juice will stay inside. Place foil wrapped tails on a cookie sheet and bake in a 450 degree oven.

4-8 oz. tails for 25 minutes

9-12 oz. tails for 30 minutes

13-16 oz. tails for 35 minutes

When done, fold back foil and brown under the broiler for 1 minute. Remove tails to a hot platter, pour juice from foil over tails and serve with lots of hot butter on the side.