Is there a food or meal that just transports you back in time or to a place in the distant or not so distant past? For me it’s lobster. If I see lobster I’m immediately time-traveling to summer circa 1982 (ish) and Cape Cod, Massachusetts. My dad took us there for summer vacation when I was about 11 or 12, Molly 2 years younger, and Katie was just a chubby toddler running around in diapers.
My dad and another family went in together on what seemed to me at the time an enormous Cape Cod style beach house, windows and all. It had a ton of rooms, a huge living room, sandy yards, and a massive front porch.
One afternoon the dads showed up with a cooler full of fresh lobsters and mussels. I thought the lobsters looked a bit creepy and wasn’t sure who would ever want to eat “muscles,” but it turned out to be one of the most delicious and memorable meals of my life. Maybe it was the fact that it was all as fresh as it could be and we were on a beach vacation. Maybe it’s just nostalgia and the way I remember it and the other memories from that vacation.
I remember being crammed into the back seat of a small car with my two sisters and riding for what seemed like days to get there. I remember that during the long long time ago car ride I heard Don McClean’s classic American Pie for the first time and how we all sang along. Well, all of us except Katie, since she hadn’t really learned to talk yet – she has since made up for that. If you’re familiar with this song, you will understand how a couple of kids would be able to sing along to it while experiencing it for the first time. If you’re not familiar with American Pie (the song not the movie that refers so much to band camp), please stop making me feel old, invest almost 10 minutes of your life, and go check it out.
That song remains my all time favorite to this day.
I remember floating in Cape Cod Bay on a raft and getting bit by a crab or some other creature I didn’t want to know about. This is probably the reason I turned into a weenie and am now afraid to swim in natural water.
And then there was Katie who ripped off her diaper and planted her bare self in the beer cooler full of icy water. She swam around in there and giggled her little head off. Katie now is the mother of 5 year old TRIPLETS. Oh my.
When the thought came to me for a lobster salad, it immediately became 1982 (ish). I was on the big rental house porch in Cape Cod watching my youngest sister skinny dipping in the beer cooler as sounds of American Pie sang in my head. I was transported back in time to when I was just a kid with no worries. Life was simpler and summer vacations were full of new discoveries.
I invite you to make your favorite time-travel dish, pour a glass of wine, and meet me on the front porch. I want to hear all about what makes it so memorable and what special place it takes you to.
For the Salad
- One head of romaine cleaned and chopped or torn into bite size pieces
- 4 sweet campari tomatoes quartered (halved cherry or grape would be fine too - use as many as you like)
- 1/2 avocado cut into small to medium chunks (you will use half in the salad and half in the dressing)
- 8 oz cooked peeled, frozen, and thawed lobster tails (1-2 fresh tails would be better; shrimp, crab claws, or scallops would be a good substitute)
For the Dressing
- 1/2 cup white wine vinegar
- 3/4 cup olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves pressed
- 2.5 tablespoons honey
- 1/2 medium avocado cut into medium to large chunks
- 1 lemon zested and juice from half
- salt to taste and pepper if you prefer
- 2-4 tablespoons water to thin
Arrange romaine in a large bowl and top with tomatoes
Add vinegar, olive oil, pressed garlic, honey, 1/2 avocado, lemon zest and juice to a blender and puree until smooth.
Season with salt and pepper to taste and use water to thin if necessary or desired, blend until consistency you like
Toss avocado to top of salad and add lobster or whatever shellfish you are using
Drizzle with dressing
Note: This was enough to make an entree easily for 2 people or 4 sides, but I ate the whole thing myself.
Shelby @ Go Eat and Repeat
Lobster, well any form of seafood really, is delicious in salad! This looks so yummy!
Thanks so much Shelby! All seafood is delicious, right?
Cheyanne @ No Spoon Necessary
I have always wanted to visit Cape Cod! Love hearing about your childhood memories♡ Nastolgia is the best…or it can just make you feel old. Lol. Depends which side of the grass you want to be on 😉 I love lobster salad and yours looks delish! Makes me crave a big bowl of this, a cold beer, and a rocking chair on a waterside dock to relax on while I devour this. This is the stuff dreams are made of ♡Cheers
Girl, you really have to go! I haven’t been there in a very long time, but I love it there. I’ll just remember everything fondly and try not to feel too old. 🙂 OMG! Let me know when you are ready and I’ll totally join you on that waterside dock! I’ll bring the beer! 🙂
I LOVE YOU AND THIS RECIPE! THANK YOU for NOT coating the delicious lobster meat with MAYO – gahhh!!! Ha Ha!
OMG! LOL! It’s a salad with lobster not a lobster roll! And dude, what is wrong with mayo!?!?! Love that stuff! Love you too, girl! XOXO
Cali @ Cali's Cuisine
This looks spectacular. I will have to give it a try and guarantee that I too will consume the entire salad as well!
Thanks Calie! It’s easy to get carried away!
This sounds yummy and so easy. I will probably substitute the lobster for shrimp. NO mayo…………that works for me. I had forgotten about that trip and at the time it was a nail biter for me. Your description many years later brings back a happy adventure for you. Thanks for sharing.
Thanks Mags! Shrimp would be good. I hadn’t thought about it before, but can see now why you would be worried to send your girls so far away!
Gayle @ Pumpkin 'N Spice
Oh this salad is calling my name! I love pretty much any salad with seafood, though I don’t think I’ve ever had one with lobster before. I love how pretty this is, Rachelle! Sounds amazing!
Thanks Gayle! You should totally try lobster in a salad – it’s delicious!
Heather - Butter & Burlap
You must live near the coast… ‘cuz there’s no finding fresh seafood where I live! Looks amazing though, and your pictures are so pretty!
Thanks for your kind compliments on my pictures! I’m still learning so much about photography.
David @ Spiced
Hahahaha…the thought of a toddler swimming around butt-naked in a beer cooler is going to keep me chuckling for the rest of the day! But seriously, that sounds like an awesome vacation. It makes me want to rent a cabin on the beach and make a huge bowl of lobster salad. This looks delicious! Oh, and American Pie is one of my favorite songs of all time. I love all of the hidden references throughout it. Plus, Buddy Holly was the real king of rock ‘n roll…not Elvis! (There’s actually a musical–and also a movie version–called Buddy. It’s worth investing 2 hours and watching it!)
I’m glad you are getting a laugh at my sister’s expense, David! 🙂 That was really funny and Molly and I still laugh about it. Now I want to rent a cabin on the beach too! American Pie is such a great classic and totally interesting with the mysteries – thanks for making me feel not old! I’ll have to look for the Buddy movie. Maybe schedule some do nothing time this weekend to watch it and eat lemon bread. 🙂
Annie @ ciaochowbambina
Okay! First of all, American Pie was our anthem. Yes – 1982, recent high school grad, belting away with my buddies in the garage with the indoor-outdoor carpet! So glad you invited us to make our favorite time travel dish…I love that! But I bet that doesn’t surprise you! This lobster salad looks fabulous. I am very ready for summer and you’re helping me imagine it!! Awesome post, my friend!
Thanks so much, Annie! It doesn’t surprise me at all that you would be into time traveling dishes! Were you in a band or just having a good time singing on the lovely carpet? 1982 – didn’t we have fantastic hair and a flair for fashion? 🙂
Annie @ ciaochowbambina
Hahahah! That would be a good time singing on the lovely kelly green carpet! My kids would laugh to hear that! Such style we had!!
Funny! I’m sure you are a great singer, friend! Some friends of mine had a band and they always played in the garage. I’m sure there was a very good reason for that! Please excuse me now. I have to go curl, tease, and hairspray my bangs. 🙂
Keri @ Fashionable Foods
I love lobster in any form and I can’t wait to try this salad. I also love American Pie and know every single word! Cape Cod is definitely on my places to visit list!
That’s awesome, Keri! I know all the words too. 🙂 Let’s go to Cape Cod, eat lobster, and have a sing a long!
Cathleen @ A Taste Of Madness
Can you believe that I have never had lobster before?? This salad is definitely making me want to change that!
What?!?!?! Girl, you need to change that ASAP!
Jess @ whatjessicabakednext
This lobster salad looks divine! I love the creamy dressing! 😀
Thanks Jess! I think the dressing would be good on any just about any salad.
Annie @ The Garlic Diaries
This lobster salad looks to die for. I love anything lobster, especially when it is mixed with delicious avocados (another fave)!
I love anything lobster too – and avocado!
This salad is gorgeous! Can’t wait to try it ! Love lobster and the dressing sounds delicious!
Thanks Mira! You can’t go wrong with lobster!
Kelly - Life Made Sweeter
It’s wonderful how food can transport you back in time, loved hearing about your childhood memories. This is such a beautiful salad! Love the creamy avocado dressing!
It really is wonderful Kelly. Thanks!
Erin @ Miss Scrambled Egg
Such a cool story, Rachelle! Cape Cod is gorgeous and they have such delicious and fresh seafood. 🙂 My boyfriend would go crazy over this salad.
Erin – I’m jealous that you are so close to Cape Cod. Not many boys would ask for a salad, so you should totally make him one!
Senika @ Foodie Blog Stalker
Love this post! Food=memories to me too. Even just the smell of some things cooking bring me straight back to my Oma’s (Grandma’s) kitchen 🙂 This lobster salad + a icy glass of white wine sounds just about PERFECT!!!
Thanks so much Senika! I know what you mean about going back to your Oma’s kitchen. You are spot on with the white wine too!
Anu-My Ginger Garlic Kitchen
This salad looks gorgeous. Even though, I don’t eat lobster but this one is making me do so. 🙂
You could totally substitute some other kind of seafood or fish!
This looks so so delicious and that dressing – I am in love!!
We really liked it. Thanks Ami!
Maya @ Treats and Eats
Oooh, this sounds delicious! I love lobster in pretty much anything, but definitely don’t have it in salads often enough. We don’t live too far from the Cape, but we rarely go. Will definitely have to change that!
You live near Cape Cod? Totally jealous! I would go all the time and so should you, Maya!
Thao @ In Good Flavor
Such good, sweet memories for you! It sounds so wonderful that I almost wanted it to be my own. Lobster is one my most favorite food: it is on my list of last request meal, in fact. I’m loving this lobster salad and can eat that whole bowl too!
Awwww thanks Thao, for your kind words. Lobster is definitely a great choice for a last request meal!
This looks delicious and IS DELICIOUS! Made it last night for dinner but substituted shrimp instead of lobster. Also added a tad more honey for my own sweet taste. I need all the help I can get, right?I’m making it again this weekend and taking it to our friends to share. I’m also thinking since we are having steaks why not grill the shrimp and add to the salad. Surf n Turf ! This is a keeper for sure.
Thanks for the great feedback, Mags! Grilled shrimp sounds perfect. I hope your friends enjoy it too!