Thursday, September 27, 2012

Haven's Kitchen: Lobster Roll Class

This summer I cooked my first lobster! And I'm so glad I had supervision while doing it.  You know, just in case the crustacean went buckwild on me.  I can now cross this off my bucket list thanks to the 'Montauk Lobster Rolls and Long Island Wines' class at Haven's Kitchen.

Located conveniently near Union Square, Haven's Kitchen is a fairly new establishment that focuses on educating people and promoting local and sustainable foods.  It's an adorable space!  The front part is a store where they carry cute tabletop items, local artisinal pantry foods, and fresh brewed coffees and teas.  It opens up to the classroom with a large communal table and workstations.  They offer a nice variety of classes each month, viewable in their calendar on their website.  

'Montauk Lobster Rolls & Long Island Wines' class at Haven's Kitchen
'Montauk Lobster Rolls & Long Island Wines' class at Haven's Kitchen
We had (I think) ~12 people in class, in addition to one instructor and two assistants.  After donning aprons and sipping some wine, we jumped right in and they brought out a whole tub full of lobsters resting on ice and seaweed.  The lobsters came from the Lobster Place located just blocks away in Chelsea Market (love that Haven's Kitchen used a local and accessible source)!  As the instructor started doing demos and showing us the differences between male and female lobsters, they started waking up and moving around the tub.  [Queue the beginning of my squealing!]

We got busy prepping ingredients and each took turns cooking a lobster.  Having never ever touched a real live lobster before, I learned how to pick one up and how to properly put one in the pot.  Contrary to what I wanted to do, apparently you're not supposed to throw it in the pot and jump away!  I squealed the whole time, but I successfully slowly slid the lobster in along the side of the pot into the boiling water.  (I know I claim to cook a lot, but raw/live seafood still makes me so uneasy!)

With the hard part done, I could finally breathe and waited for my lobster to turn bright red.  Then it joined it's other friends in an ice bath.

Meet my lobster!  Piggy KL-1; Lobster-0 Woohoo!

Lobsters just chillin'

We got busy learning how to break open a lobster and started pulling all the meat out to make two kinds of lobster filling.  One was the 'classic' version with mayo.  The other was a non-mayo version, with avocado, lemon juice and olive oil.  Yum!  In the meantime we were also preparing twice fried fries.  The instructor did a nice job of involving everyone and kept the class moving at a good pace.  

The classic lobster roll filling with mayo
At the end of class, we all sat down together at the communal table and pigged out over the two types of lobster rolls, fries, and more Long Island wines.  Both versions were delicious, but I'm partial to the classic mayo version.  It was a lovely night was great company, delicious food, and well-paired wine.

Delicious lobster rolls! 

It was a nice gesture that Haven's Kitchen was generous with wine.  All throughout class, there was someone making sure your glass wasn't empty.  I liked that we didn't feel nickle and dimed.  

It was a great class for people of all levels of culinary skills.  Hubby JL is a kitchen novice but he actually looked like he knew what he was doing by the middle of class!  The staff was patient and friendly.

The day after our class, we received an email with the recipes.  One of these days when I muster up enough courage to handle a live lobster again, maybe I'll give it a try. I had a great time, loved the venue, and look forward to visiting again!  Take a look at their upcoming schedule; do any classes look interesting to you?  Report back if you take any, or bring me too!

Piggy says yes!

Haven's Kitchen
109 West 17th Street
New York, NY 10011

Piggy KL


  1. OMG... you have to make this for Tgiving!

  2. I offer your Dad to cook the lobster(s) anytime. Lobsters for Thanksgiving? Why not? I'll still roast the turkey.

  3. Wait until you see what else I've been cooking up! I'll contribute for Tgiving for sure :)

  4. I am so excited! Now we have a big kitchen to work out of!