Sippican Cottage

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Hamburgers and other sandwich-sized offerings are standard fare in most U.S. states.  But this is the favorite here in the fishing and lobstering port of Boothbay Harbor and elsewhere in the seaside state of Maine: a lobster roll (served here with "cole slaw," a form of cabbage salad).  The ingredients of a lobster roll are few and simple: hunks of lobster meat, drawn butter, a hint of mayonnaise, and a bun.
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A Man Who Has Nothing In Particular To Recommend Him Discusses All Sorts of Subjects at Random as Though He Knew Everything

Better Than Haggis

We had to import a guy from Scotland to make a decent lobster sandwich, apparently. The fellow knows his business. Both of them.

Maine has a love/hate relationship with lobsters. Lobstermen call them “bugs,” and many won’t eat them. They prefer to sell them, and eat hamburgers on the grill. Lobsters are their stock in trade, and you’re not supposed to get high on your own supply, dude. It’s the same in many walks of life, I assume. What’s a treat for others is the same old thing if you see it every day.

Like most traditional dishes that are considered delicacies, lobsters used to be poor person food. Back when New England was first settled, you could simply collect them from the shoreline. They were so cheap that in colonial times, they served them to prisoners every day, or at least until they rioted and demanded real food. But lobsters eventually got scarcer, and people began to associate them with upper crust folks, who were descended from the people who originally pestered the Indians away from the shoreline and kept all the bugs for themselves.

No one tell Gordon, but in Maine, lobster is almost always served as a lobster roll: diced up, overcooked lobster, buried in mayonnaise, and served on a flaccid hot dog roll. It’s usually accompanied with a plastic tub of runny cole slaw, in case you haven’t got enough mayonnaise in you yet. If Gordon finds out, he might disparage Maine, and I’d be forced to publish a recipe for haggis to fight back.

2 Responses

  1. “Maine has a love/hate relationship with lobsters. Lobstermen call them “bugs,” and many won’t eat them. They prefer to sell them, and eat hamburgers on the grill.”

    Same with Newfoundland. A friend told me how she envied the kids in her school who could afford to have roast beef or ham sandwiches for lunch while she had to put up with lobster rolls.

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