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Lobster Fra Diavolo Recipe

Spicy traditional Rome dish

Lobster Fra Diavolo is a dish originating from Rome and contains a spicy mixture of pasta and the king of seafood (lobster). Try this authantic recipe for Lobster Fra Diavolo.

Serves 6






  1. To make the sauce, cut the onion, carrot and garlic into medium dice. Place in a food processor and pulse to finely chop without pureeing. If you do not have a food processor, chop by hand. Combine with 3 tablespoons of the olive oil in a heavy 2-quart saucepan and place over medium heat. Cook for about 10 minutes until the vegetables are browned, stiring only to prevent scorching. Add the bay leaf, red pepper and oregano. Stir and cook for 1 minute. Add the lobster broth and tomato paste. Drain the tomato juice from the can into the pot. Coarsely chop the tomatoes and add them as well. Season to taste with black pepper. Bring to a boil, lower the heat and simmer until the sauce is cooked down to about half its original volume and very thick, about 45 minutes. Either keep the sauce warm while you cook the lobsters or refrigerate until ready to use.

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

  1. Cut the baguette on a diagonal into slices about 1 inch thick. Brush the slices on both sides with olive oil and arrange on a baking sheet. Place in the oven just before you start cooking the lobster; the bread will be ready when the lobsters are cooked. If your sauce was made ahead of time and chilled, reheat it before you toast the bread and cook the lobsters.

  1. With a medium Chinese cleaver or large chef's knife, split the lobsters in half lengthwise. Remove and discard the head sac and intestine, Remove the claws and knuckles, leaving them attached to each other. This is done by cutting the knuckle close to where it meets the carcass. With the back side of your kife, crack the center of each claw on one side only. Remove the tomalley and the toe if present and place in a small bow. Break into small pieces using a fork and cover with plastic wrap. Quarter the lobster by cutting down shell side down, so that you can slide them into the hot pan.

  2. Heat a 12-inch saute pan over high heat for a few minutes until the pan is very hot. Add the remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil and then slide in the lobster pieces; they should sizzle. Using thongs, move the pieces around to sear the shells evenly. Because of their shape, you will have to hold them in the hot oil to accomplish this. Saute for about 4 minutes until all the shells have stuck to the pan. Lower the heat and add the tomato sauce along with the tomalley and roe. Stir the lobster, then cover the pan loosely. Simmer for 5 minutes, then move the pieces around to ensure even cooking. Cover again and simmer for 5 minutes more. Check to see how the toast is doing; it should be ready. Use tongs to remove the parsley. Stir the sauce well and spoon over the lobster. Place the warm, crispy toasts around the platter and serve at once.


1. One teaspoon dried red pepper flakes will make the sauce spicy hot. If you like it really fiery, add more.

2. To serve the lobster over pasta, omit the toast and cook linguine or spaghetti instead. Figure on 3 to 4 ounces dried pasta per person. After draining the pasta, toss it with a little sauce and place it on a warmed platter. Arrange the pieces of lobster over the pasta and spoon on the remaining sauce.

4. To make this dish with leftover lobster, make the sauce as described but add the 1/2 cup wine to the sauce at the same time you add the tomatoes. Do not reduce the sauce as much as when using live lobsters. Cut up the cooked lobster and discard the head sac and the intestine. Remove the tomalley and roe, chop it and add it to the sauce along with any juices and blood (the white stuff) that may be present. Simmer for a few minutes, then add the cut-up lobster. Turn off the heat and let the lobster sit in the sauce for 15 minutes. Reheat the lobster and sauce. Serve over linguine or spaghetti

Enjoy your Lobster Fra Diavolo!

Other helpful resources:

Butterflying Lobster Tail - Learn how to cook a lobster tail just like they do in the restaurants.

Boiling a Lobster - Boiling a lobster is one of the easiest ways to cook a lobster. Learn how here.

Baking Lobster Tails - Here's an easy way to make lobster tails.

Steaming a Lobster - Learn how to steam a whole lobster.