This post was published in happy partnership with EatEnjoy, who sponsored this post. The Hot Cheesy Lobster Pots Recipe is at the end of this post. 

I have had long running issues with digesting dairy. First diagnosed as lactose intolerance, then reassessed by exclusion diet as lactose intolerance and slow onset cows milk allergy, and now, being reassessed again as it seems like it is an intolerance clouded by a gluten issue (I am mid diagnosis). Regardless, dairy causes me major problems, lots of pain and intestinal distress. I have had to ensure I don’t have it and eating out in particular has become a bit of a minefield. 

Usually when people find out that I have to avoid dairy their response often is – while wielding a wedge of cheese in my face often – oh, I couldn’t do that! The thing is, when you can’t have dairy, when it makes you ill, you do cut it out. When I have dairy I am floored for a few days. Exhausted, sick, sore, red skin, so many issues. Of course I don’t want to cut it out, I love ALL things dairy.

Cheese, fondue, melty, peppery things. All the Roman pastas! Cacio e Pepe, Carbonara, Gricia, Amatriciana! There is little like a custard, especially a savoury one. Parmesan custard is one I covet and my bacon and cheddar custard from my next book. Butter on potatoes with chives, how I miss that almost the most. Childhood memories of stewed apples from the tree down the road with a summit of pale custard on a daily basis come the end of summer. I had come to accept it. 

Trying Dairy Digestive Tablets from EatEnjoy

Cue an email from EatEnjoy to advise that they have dairy digestive tablets that maybe I would like to try? I replied thanking them but explaining that lactose tablets help but they don’t fully work for me as I have issues with the protein also. They replied, but our tablets help break down the protein also!  

Ok, I will give it a go. Please send me the science and also advise how much dairy a tablet can handle? How many should I take? Each tablet helps digest a 250ml glass of milk. Take two if what you are eating is particularly dairy heavy. 

I didn’t have much hope in truth. I was worried about the pain that might ensue, and all of the discomfort (which can resonate for days). 

The tablets arrived and I took myself to the shop. One great pleasure of mine on dark days was a good cheese and a suitable bottle of red wine. So I bought myself a cows milk cheese (a Lincolnshire poacher) and a lovely red. I ate it all. This was a test after all. Nothing. Nothing that night, but sometimes it can kick in the next day (although usually it is pretty swift). I was fine. 

Time to explore further. I have discovered that I can tolerate moderate amounts of dairy. So just a little fondue, a lot more hard cheese. 

How EatEnjoy Dairy Works

EatEnjoy Dairy includes a unique blend of enzymes – Dairylytic® – developed by scientists at the US enzyme-supplement specialist Deerland Enzymes. EatEnjoy Dairy contains lactase and protease, specially formulated to help digest dairy food. Lactase enzyme improves lactase digestion in people like me who have difficulty digesting lactose, while protease targets milk proteins and works to break these down. The claim that lactase enzyme improves lactase digestion in individuals who have difficulty digesting lactose is approved by the European Food Safety Authority and these tablets do help me.

With EatEnjoy Dairy you will be able to digest about 250ml of milk, without any problems. If there is more milk or dairy products in one meal – then one should take 2 capsules. I have found that I can tolerate normal amounts, like one of these small Hot Cheesy Lobster Pots. They are very cheesy and have sour cream too, so I pop two tablets for these. What a treat to be able to indulge! 

Celebrating with Hot Cheesy Lobster Pots

To celebrate, I made these Hot Cheesy Lobster Pots. Based on a lobster dip that I had enjoyed at a friends house in Nova Scotia on the one Christmas that I spent there. It was sublime and was almost stressful as I couldn’t stop eating it, and I knew that really I shouldn’t eat it all myself. You know how it goes. I go to Nova Scotia often, almost annually. I was even a judge for the best lobster roll competition in Nova Scotia once! When I go I embrace it and I order it everywhere I go. If I have a chance I cook with it too. 

The easiest way to do this is to buy frozen prepared lobster meat from a good source. Failing that cooked frozen lobsters are easy to come by at this time of year and they are often on offer too. Raw frozen lobster tails are an excellent choice, allowing the lobster to cook in the sauce (once you have removed the shell). And of course, if you can get British or Irish lobsters they are excellent.  

The Perfect Christmas Starter or Indulgent Snack 

This is perfect for your Christmas table, or for late suppers by the fire with a lovely glass of wine. As a starter, I would aim for 50-70g of lobster per person, depending on your budget and appetite (or the meat from one small lobster for two people which seems to average 125g). It would do very well with some buttered toasts and maybe a sprig of watercress.

I tested this recipe many times (not too much of a hardship!), the final version being decided upon because I just couldn’t stop eating it (and I really liked the others). The flavours were well combined and the whole thing tasted seamless. I wanted another straight away. 

I love the look of this, but what if I don’t like lobster?

No problem! This would be gorgeous with scallops too or a firm white fish like halibut. Try the sauce with your leftover turkey. Even better mix it with leftover turkey and spread it on toast and brown it under the grill. Wonderful! There are always so many possibilities. 

Disclosure: My ability to use these and enjoy moderate amounts of dairy is no guarantee that you will be able to too. There are many ways of reacting to dairy from intolerance to slow onset allergy to an allergy that can be fatal, these tablets would certainly not be recommended in an allergy situation. Please talk to your doctor if you are not clear on what your dairy digestive issues are. If you know that you are intolerant, then these are certainly worth trying. EatEnjoy have a limited time offer of 20% off with the code ENJOYDAIRY20 – read more on https://eatenjoy.co.uk/ (and you can buy them there too). 

Hot Cheesy Lobster Pots
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Hot Cheesy Lobster Pots

Ingredients

    Serves 2 - multiply as required
  • 125 - 150g lobster meat (removed from the shell or defrosted)
  • 150ml sour cream
  • 225ml mayonnaise (homemade is best if you can!)
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and grated finely
  • 50g gruyere, grated
  • 25g parmesan, grated
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard
  • hot sauce, to taste (like tabasco, frank's hot sauce or your favourite!)
  • 2 tbsp chopped chives
  • sea salt and black pepper, to taste
  • butter to grease ramekins or small baking dishes of your choice
  • 2 ramekins or small baking dishes, one high sided baking tray

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 180 deg C.
  • Combine the sour cream, mayonnaise, egg yolks, gruyere, parmesan, mustard, chives and hot sauce (I used a good dash). Season with salt and pepper and taste (the egg yolks will be fine raw, if fresh, don't worry. If worried, taste before adding the egg yolks).
  • Butter the ramekins / baking dishes and divide the lobster between them. Cover the lobster with the sauce generously.
  • Place the ramekins / baking dishes in the tray and pour boiling water in the tray so that it reaches almost the top of the dishes but not quite - you don't want any to spill in or bubble in as you transfer it to the oven.
  • Cook for 20 minutes until the tops are golden brown.
  • Serve immediately with a sprinkle of chives and some (melba) toast or crackers.
  • (These can be prepared up to a couple of days before and kept covered in the fridge until you are ready to cook them).
  • http://eatlikeagirl.com/hot-cheesy-lobster-pots-in-partnership-with-eatenjoy/

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    Niamh

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