Martha Stewart Living, June 2007

Chinese Surf & Turf

Course Main Dish
Cuisine Chinese, Seafood


  • Coarse salt or sea salt
  • 2 1/2 1 1/4 lb live lobsters
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon Water
  • 1/2 cup homemade or low-sodium store-bought chicken stock
  • 1/3 cup oyster sauce
  • 3 tablespoons mirin
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh cilantro plus sprigs for garnish
  • 1/2 teaspoon red-pepper flake
  • 4 ounces beef tenderloin steaks tied, each about 5and 1 1/2 inches thick
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 3 tablespoons peanut oil
  • 8 scallions white and pale-green parts only, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 16 in thin slices peeled fresh ginger about 1 1/2 inchesdiameter
  • 8 garlic scapes optional
  • Steamed jasmine rice for serving (optional)


  • Prepare an ice-water bath. Fill a large stockpot 3/4 full with cold water. Bring to a boil. Add 1/4 cup salt. Plunge lobsters head first into water. Return to a boil, and cook 10 minutes. Using tongs, transfer lobsters to ice-water bath, and let cool 5 minutes. Place lobsters on a cutting board. Working with one lobster at a time, twist tail from joint where it meets body. Cut tail in half down center. Twist claws from body; discard body. Separate claws from knuckles. Crack knuckles, and remove meat. Grasp "thumb" of claw, and bend it back to snap it off. Crack claws, and remove meat.
  • Whisk 1/4 cup soy sauce, the cornstarch, and water in a bowl. Add lobster pieces, and toss; set aside to marinate.
  • Combine stock, remaining tablespoon soy sauce, the oyster sauce, mirin, lemon juice, chopped cilantro, and red-pepper flakes in a bowl.
  • Season beef on all sides with salt and pepper. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add beef, leaving about 1 inch between each steak. Brown on all sides, about 8 minutes total. Add scallions, ginger, and garlic scapes if using. Reduce heat to medium. Cook, stirring scallions, ginger, and garlic scapes occasionally, until an instant-read thermometer inserted into beef registers 125 degrees for medium-rare, 4 to 6 minutes. Transfer steaks to a platter. Remove strings. Cover with parchment paper and then foil to keep warm.
  • Reduce heat to medium-low. Using a slotted spoon, add lobster pieces to sauce in skillet (reserve marinade). Cook, tossing gently, until warm, about 4 minutes. Transfer lobster to plate with beef.
  • Add oyster-sauce mixture and reserved marinade to sauce in skillet, and raise heat to high. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until sauce has thickened slightly, 1 to 2 minutes. Arrange beef and lobster on 4 plates. Pour sauce over top. Garnish with cilantro sprigs. Serve with rice if desired.
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