Recipe: Thomas Ruff Lobster

Table d’Amis chef and art historian Matthew Biodart revisits art news in the kitchen. This week: “dope.01” by Thomas Ruff.

The title of the new exhibition dedicated to Thomas Roof’s David Zwerner Gallery, “Dope”, refers to Aldous Huxley’s book The Doors of Perception, in which he discusses his experience with mind-altering substances. In fact, Ruff’s work looks psychedelic. This model imprinted intricate sporting patterns onto the faux carpet. Abstract designs have been digitized yet Raff manages to create art and evoke emotion. I find that wonderful. I also have a penchant for mathematics, the undeniable beauty of which I see.

For this dish, I made a psychedelic composition based on crab and lobster sauce, seaweed cream and edible flowers. No math, but the power of the flower on the board!

© Claire Dorn


  • 1 lobster about 500 grams
  • 1 onion, 1 celery and carrots
  • 1 deciliter of white wine
  • 1 dL of Noelie Pratt
  • 5 dl of fish broth
  • 3 dl of cream
  • 20g cream of dried seaweed
  • juice of half a lemon
  • 50 grams butter
  • 1 garlic clove, 1 thyme sprig
  • Edible flowers: borage flowers, violets, lemon flowers, marigolds

Cook lobsters for 2 minutes in a large amount of boiling water. Separate the claws from the lobsters. Place the tail in ice water and reserve the tip of the sauce. Continue cooking the legs for two minutes. Then cool the claws of the lobsters in ice water.

Remove the meat from the lobsters’ tail and claws, then set aside. First prepare the sauce: fry the lobster carcasses and the head in butter over medium heat, then with a rolling pin, carefully squeeze all the juice from the head. Add chopped onions, carrots and celery. Keep cooking. Melt with white wine and Noilly Prat. Let the alcohol evaporate and cover it with fish broth. Let it simmer for an hour. Pass it through a sieve and reduce it to about a third, until you reach the desired taste strength. Add the seaweed powder and 2 dL of cream, bring to a boil and reduce by two-thirds.

To prepare the seaweed cream, whisk the remaining half of the cream with the seaweed powder. Freshen up with lemon juice.

Gently cook and warm the lobster tail and claws in butter, along with a clove of garlic and a sprig of thyme. Moderate salt.

Serve the lobsters with lobster sauce, then add the cream of seaweed as in the picture. Finish with edible flowers.

Thomas Ruff’s “dope” is on display at the David Zwirner Gallery in New York until October 22.

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