Butter Poached Lobster Tails

Butter Poached Lobster Tails

This was the first time I have ever attempted to cook lobster, but given the huge amount of information available online about how to cook Brazilian Lobster tails and the proper removal of the shell, I was a bit less intimidated than I would have been even a year ago.

So, Sprouts was having a great deal on Brazilian Tails, so I decided to buy a couple and try out a butter poach that I had been reading about.  This dish is delicious and very tender if cooked for the proper amount of time.

Butter is an emulsification of 80% milkfat, 18% water, and 2% milk solids.  Heating butter above 160 degrees will cause it to “break” into it’s separate components.   A Beurre Monte is a technique of keeping the butter between 180 and 190 degrees, which is sufficient for poaching vegetables or meats.  As I didn’t have enough butter on hand to cover the lobster completely, I added 1/4 cup of white wine.  Adding some chopped tarragon to the butter is also a great addition to the dish.


  • 2 Brazilian Lobster Tails per person, shells removed
  • 1 lb. Unsalted Butter, cut into chunks
  • 1 Tbsp water
  • 1/4 cup wine
  • 1 sprig tarragon, leaves picked and roughly chopped


Determine how much butter you will need by placing the lobster tails in a large enough pan, side by side; add just enough water to cover.

Immediately remove the lobster tails, drain them, set aside; and measure the water in the pan. You will need this amount of butter to cover and poach the tails.

When you are about an hour from serving the lobster tails, take them out of the refrigerator and bring them to room temperature.

To make the Beurre Monte:

In a saucepan, bring the  1 Tbsp of water and 1/4 cup of white wine to a boil over high heat and then add the tarragon. 

Reduce the heat to low and begin adding the chunks of butter (a little at a time) whisking to emulsify.  Once the emulsion has begun, you may whisk more butter in at a faster rate.  Hold the temperature of the Beurre Monte between 160 and 190 degrees for poaching.   Be careful not to boil the mixture or the sauce will break.  The mixture should have the consistency of a very thick butter sauce.

Butter Poached Lobster

Butter Poached Lobster

When ready to poach the lobster tails, use a thermometer and bring the beurre monte up to at least 160° degrees, but not over 190° degrees. Depending on how large and how many lobster tails you are preparing, will determine how long to poach them; it usually takes from 5 to 7 minutes.  

They should not be rubbery but of a soft consistency (almost as if not completely cooked).   The lobster should be white and not very opaque in color.

When done, remove them from the Beaurre Monte and serve.  I served mine with a Saffron Tomato Risotto.