Lobster bouillabaisse

For a romantic Valentine's Day dinner at home, try Chef Randy Feltis's lobster bouillabaisse, enhanced with stock made from lobster shells.

For a romantic Valentine’s Day dinner at home, try Chef Randy Feltis’s lobster bouillabaisse, enhanced with stock made from lobster shells.

Lobster bouillabaisse

Serves 2
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes
Simmer time: 2 hours
Special tools: food processor, fine mesh strainer


2-lb lobster
1/2 fennel bulb
1 large potato
1 red pepper
1 ripe tomato
1 carrot
1 celery stalk
1/2 red onion
4 cloves garlic
1 nub ginger
‎4 star anise
1 stalk lemongrass
2 bay leaves
1 tsp fennel seeds
Pinch smoked paprika
Salt and pepper
1 cup white wine
4 cups vegetable stock
Splash olive oil
1/4 cup butter
Squeeze of lemon


1. In a large pot, boil lobster for 10 minutes. Remove and let cool. With the exception of the fennel and potato, dice all veggies.

2. In a large pot, heat olive oil to medium and saute garlic, ginger and lemongrass. Then add the aromatics: star anise, fennel seeds, bay leaves and paprika. When colour starts to form on the bottom, add diced veggies. Stir occasionally.

3. When color reappears, deglaze ‎with white wine. Reduce by half and add stock.

4. Remove lobster from its shell. Cut the tail in half lengthwise and place in a small pot with butter. ‎Toss shells into simmering stock. Heat lobster in butter just before plating.

5. Dice the potato into 6 perfect cubes and season with salt, pepper and olive oil‎. Pan fry until golden and crisp, 2 minutes per side.

6. Shave fennel paper thin and dress with a splash of olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper.

7. After stock has reduced by half, blend aggressively in food processor (shells and all). Pass through fine mesh strainer and season.

‎8. In a large pasta bowl, place half of the tail in the corner of the bowl, tucking knuckles behind and claw on top, three potato cubes in front and shaved fennel on top. Present this at the table and pour the beautiful rich, thick broth in the naked part of the bowl. (Not too much. Remember, it’s more of a sauce and less of a broth!) Look into each others eyes and enjoy.

Courtesy Randy Feltis