Black gold cocktail

Svart guld cocktail

Lobster cocktail

Black Gold, as Swedish lobster is often called, is caught off the west coast of Sweden. The lobster is said to be amongst the best in the world as a result of maturing slowly in the cold water. Sadly it is priced accordingly, so I’ve never been able to afford one!

If your budget runs to Black Gold you might also enjoy a “lobster safari”. They begin on the first Monday after 20th September and provide the opportunity for participants to venture out to sea and help with hauling up lobster pots. You can then pick your lobster and take it back for a chef to cook your catch. An online search will show that there are several companies running lobster safaris.

Lobsters on sale in London's Borough Market

My budget doesn’t stretch to the Black Gold and so instead, if I fancy a treat, I buy some really nice English lobster, which has been caught off the Sussex coast, at London’s Borough Market. Of course, it is still expensive (usually they are £15 each), but they are wonderful for a special occasion, and a lobster cocktail makes one of the finest starters that it is possible to imagine. John Duxbury


Recipe summary for lobster cocktail


8-12   asparagus spears, green or white
100 g (1 cup) lettuce leaves, roughly shredded
4-8   button mushrooms, thinly sliced
2   small tomatoes, cored and sliced
2   small cooked lobsters
    paprika (optional)


4 tbsp   mayonnaise
2 tbsp   gräddfil or soured cream
1 tsp   brandy
¼ tsp   lemon juice
1 tbsp   chilli sauce
    salt, to taste
    cayenne pepper, to taste


4   lemon wedges
4   dill sprigs


1. Break the ends off the asparagus spears and discard the tough bottoms. Rinse the tops thoroughly to wash any grit off.

2. Cook the spears for 2 minutes in lightly salted boiling water. Drain thoroughly and then refresh in ice-cold water. (This helps preserve the colour and prevents them continuing to cook.)

3. When cold dry the spears thoroughly with kitchen paper. Cut off the top 5 cm (2”) and keep for a garnish. Roughly chop the rest.

4. Mix the chopped asparagus, lettuce, mushroom slices and tomatoes. Divide the mixture between four dishes or cocktail glasses.

5. Remove the meat from the lobster bodies and roughly chop. Place on top of the lettuce mixture.

6. Mix the dressing ingredients and season to taste with salt and cayenne pepper. Pour the dressing over the lobster. (You might not need it all.)

7. Crack the claws and use them to garnish the cocktails.

8. Dip the end of the asparagus spears in paprika (optional) and then add these to the cocktails as a garnish.

9. Finally garnish with lemon wedges and sprigs of dill.


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John Duxbury
Editor and Founder