3 young hen lobsters, boiled
Mace or nutmeg
Lemon peel, grated
1 egg yolk
3 quarts veal broth
Butter and flour for thickening
Essence of anchovy
You must have three fine lively young hen lobsters, and boil them; when cold, split the tails; take out the fish, crack the claws, and cut the meat into mouthfuls: take out the coral, and soft part of the body; bruise part of the coral in a mortar; pick out the fish from the chines; beat part of it with the coral, and with this make forcemeat balls, finely-flavored with mace or nutmeg, a little grated lemon-peel, and Cayenne; pound these with the yelk of an egg.
Have three quarts of veal broth; bruise the small legs and the chine, and put them into it, to boil for twenty minutes, then strain it; and then to thicken it, take the live spawn and bruise it in a mortar with a little butter and flour; rub it through a sieve, and add it to the soup with the meat of the lobsters, and the remaining coral; let it simmer very gently for ten minutes; do not let it boil, or its fine red color will immediately fade; turn it into a tureen; add the juice of a good lemon, and a little essence of anchovy.
The Cook’s Oracle by William Kitchiner, MD, New York, 1829
Lobsters, they say, were once so common in Atlantic waters that they were considered junk food and fed to prisoners in jail. It is unlikely that those unfortunates were given access to mace, nutmeg, lemon peel or Cayenne, so there are at least some advantages to the present day. “Chines” is a rather unusual term for the exoskeleton of a crustacean, as it usually refers to the neck bones of something like a sheep rather than the shell of a lobster. We must allow Dr. Kitchiner his little quirks. If you search your lobster innards for “coral” and don’t find a little red object, you have been given male lobsters rather than the female (hen) ones called for here.