grilled lobster tail on white plate with butter

How to Prevent Lobster Tails from Curling on the Grill: Use a Skewer

Grilling lobster tails is a delightful way to enjoy this luxurious seafood. The allure lies not just in their rich, succulent flavor but also in their visual appeal. However, one of the most common challenges encountered when grilling these crustacean tails is the tendency for them to curl up. This curling phenomenon can be a bit of a frustration, as it affects the lobster’s appetizing look on the plate. The reason behind this curling is the series of muscles inside the lobster’s tail. When these muscles are exposed to heat, they contract, causing the tail to curve. The solution? A skewer! 

This easy trick involves running a skewer lengthwise through the lobster tail to keep it straight during the grilling process. Apart from ensuring a straight, well-presented lobster tail, using skewers enables ease of handling the tails. With the piercing rods in place, it becomes incredibly convenient to place the tails on the grill and turn them as needed. The skewers act like handles, providing a firm grip and reducing the risk of the tails falling apart on the grill. They also make it much easier to remove the tails from the grill once they’re cooked.

The skewer trick

Lobster tails on wooden skewers

To begin, you’ll need some wooden or metal skewers. If you’re using wooden skewers, soak them in water for at least 30 minutes before grilling. This prevents the skewers from burning on the grill. Next, prepare the lobster tails. Start by thawing them if they are frozen. Then, using kitchen shears or a knife, cut through the top shell lengthwise. Be careful not to cut through the bottom shell. You want to keep it intact to hold the meat in place. After you’ve cut the shell, gently pry it open and loosen the meat from the shell, lifting it slightly so it sits on top of the shell. This step makes for a more appealing presentation. Now, it’s time for the skewer trick. 

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Take a skewer and carefully insert it through the tail, starting from the end where the tail fans out and running it all the way to the base of the tail (if the tails are very large, you can cut them in half first). Ensure the skewer runs through the meat but close to the shell, keeping it as straight as possible. With the skewers in place, the lobster tails are ready to be seasoned. Then, it’s time to hit the grill. The skewers will ensure the tails remain straight and cook evenly. To serve, remove the skewers carefully, and plate the tails with your preferred dipping sauce and a slice of lemon for an extraordinary, seafood feast.

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