These seafood rolls recreate the luxurious lobster and crab rolls you’ll find all over New England from summer to autumn (or fall!). A delicious soft potato roll filled with poached shrimp (prawns) and a light mayo. Amazing by itself or with some fries, chips or salad
I (Dom) went on honeymoon with my wife around New England back in 2018, and we gorged on these on the coast of Maine. Sitting on the harbour, breathing in fresh coastal air elevated these even further. Lobster rolls seemed to be most common around Maine, with chopped lobster tail and claw meat usually lightly seasoned with lemon juice, and occasionally a touch of mayonnaise for creaminess. However, shredded crab was also a delight in a roll, especially with a sharp pickle on the side.
I’ve been dying to recreate these ever since we first ate them. However, lobster and fresh crab is very expensive here in the UK (at least in London). Tinned crab is a decent alternative, but large shrimp (king prawns) make the best substitute.
The rolls are potato rolls, which incorporate a small portion of mashed potatoes in an enriched bread dough. They are fluffy yet buttery and the perfect counterpart to the tangy seafood filling.
The shrimp are quickly poached then iced (making sure they are plump and juicy but not rubbery and overcooked), chopped, and mixed into a lemony mayonnaise with a sprinkling of dill. Easy to make, and you’ll be glad you did. A perfect summer or autumn lunch, or dinner for that matter. You’ll just have to imagine the coastal air (unless you live by the sea, in which case, lucky you).
New England Shrimp Rolls
- 120 ml Water lukewarm
- 7 g Yeast dried
- 45 g Sugar
- 100 ml Milk
- 125 g Mashed Potatoes
- 80 g Butter melted
- 1½ tsp Salt
- 575 g Flour plain
- 330 g Large Shrimp (King Prawns) raw, deshelled and deveined
- 60 g Mayonnaise
- 1 stick Celery finely diced
- 1 Lemon juiced
- 1/2 tsp Dill dried
- 4 Potato Rolls
- 2 tbsp Butter softened
- In a large mixing bowl, or bowl of a stand mixer, combine water and yeast and leave for a few minutes until frothy.
- Tip in the sugar, milk, mashed potatoes, butter and salt and stir to combine. Add the flour and mix together to form a shaggy dough. Add a touch of water if it seems too dry.
- Knead for about 5 minutes on medium in a stand mixer. It should become quite smooth and ball-up around the dough hook. If kneading by hand, knead until smooth.
- Cover with cling-film or a damp towel and leave to rise for about one hour, until at least doubled.
- Gently tip the dough out onto a clean, floured surface. Using a pastry cutter, or sharp knife, divide the dough into half. Divide those halves into half again, and those pieces into three, to create 12 roughly equal pieces of dough.
- Line and grease a deep baking dish, about 9×13 in. Using a well-floured hand, turn each piece into a slightly elongated roll and pack into the baking tin, to form two rows of 6. To get a smooth, rounded top on your rolls, when forming the dough you can keep pinching bits of dough from the edge and stretch them towards the center. It should only take 6-10 pinches to form a smooth ball.
- Cover and leave to rise for another hour. Pre-heat the oven to 180°c.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes until nicely browned. Allow to cool before serving.
- Bring a pan of salted water to the boil. Prepare a bowl of very cold water, ideally with ice.
- Mix together mayonnaise with celery, dill and lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste.
- Put raw shrimp into the boiling water until they turn pink and have slightly plumped up and curled. This will only take a few seconds so keep an eye out. Quickly drain the shrimp and tip into the cold water to stop the cooking.
- Chop each shrimp into about three pieces and mix with the mayonnaise.
- Prepare four potato rolls. Slice down the middle (top to bottom, not side to side) to create space for filling. They are best served toasted. Bring a large frying pan to a medium heat. Butter the sides of the rolls and place in the frying pan for a minute or so on each side until nicely toasted.
- When rolls are cooled from toasting, add shrimp filling. Serve immediately.