In an absolutely unforgettable scene of the lovely movie Julie&Julia, the young Julie has finally the courage to approach a lobster and cook it following the great Julia Child’s recipe. The scene is much fun because Julie is very scared by the act of killing the sea creature throwing it in a big pot full of bowling water. I understand that! In every recipe, just like in every good movie there is a moment where the protagonist has to face her/his fears and overcome them!

My biggest fear in cooking this recipe was to destroy a fantastic lobster since I’m a newcomer in French cuisine, so I though to start by using langoustines which, by the way, can be bought already “killed” 🙂
The recipe is definitely less complicated than what is seams, but it has a lot of passages, so if you want to get to end without a scratch, do like I do, and follow step by step every sigle one of Julia’s instructions.



Cast (of ingredients)

1 step: 2 cups of dry white wine, 1 cup of water, 1 onion, 1 carrot, 1 celery, parsley, thyme, peppercorns, tarragon, 3 big langoustines.
2 step: 1/2 lb of fresh mushrooms, 1 tbsp butter, 1tsp lemon juice, a pinch of salt.
3 step: 5 tbsp butter, 5 tbsp flour, 1 tbsp of cream.
4 step: 1 tsp of mustard, 2 egg yolks, 1/2 cup of whipping cream, pepper.
5 step: 1/2 of whipping cream.
6 step: 5 tbsp butter, 1/3 cup cognac.
7 step: 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese, 2 tbsp butter.

Prepare the set.

In a tall stainless steel pot pour white wine, water, sliced onion, carrot and celere, parsley and all the spices of the 1 step. Bring to boil and let simmer for at least 15 minutes.

It’s time to let the protagonists in the picture!

Put on the higher flame and add the langoustines that will have to steam for at least 10 minutes till they reach a very  bright red color.

In the meanwhile prepare also the supporting actors.

Slice the mushrooms and have them stew over low to medium heat in a covered pan with the ingredients of the 2 step: butter, lemon judice and salt. They’ll be ready in 10 minutes too.
Take the protagonists langoustines out of the pot a put them aside for a while while you create the atmosphere: Thermidor sauce!

Mix the langoustines’ juices and the mushrooms’ juices (that you saved in a small bowl) and bring to boil untile the liquid is reduce to half. In another pot melt the butter and add with the flou of step 3 and whisky with the filters juices in order to create a langoustine/mashroom bechamel sauce.

Turn off the flame and pour a spoon of cream on top of it.

And it’s the langoustines’ turn to take the spotlight.

Scampi svuotatiWith a very sharp knife cut the tails leghtwise being sure not to break the shells, remove the sand sacks and intestine. Save the coral matter because you’ll need to add it to the sauce later.
Take the meat out of the tails, cut it into cubes. Put the shells on a over tray and preheat the oven at 425 F.
Mix the coral matter of the head of the langoustines with the ingredients of the 4 step (mustard, yolks, whipping cream and pepper). Poi everything in the pan with the rest of the sauce and boil for a couple of minutes.
Add also the whipping cream of step 5 to make the sauce more liquid, in any case the right consistency will cote a wodden spoon.
Put the butter of step 6 in a small pot and once it makes the forma and the meat cubes and cook 3 minutes till they reach a nice pink color.

The apix of the recipe’s plot…

Now you are ready to unite all the characters…ingredients: mix the langoustines’ meat cubes, some cream and come of the mushrooms. Fill the shells with it, sprinkle with grated parmesan, butter and bake in the oven for 10 minutes. Serve real hot. Et voilà! Langoustines Thermidor à la Julia Child!


0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This post is also available in: Italian