Classic lobster Thermidor calls for whole cooked lobster. Our simplified version uses meaty lobster tails only.
Napoleon named this dish after the eleventh month of the French Revolutionary calendar. He tasted the recipe in Thermidor, which spans July 19 to August 17.
The most common type of lobster in the United States is called the Maine or American lobster. This variety is found off the Atlantic coast of the northern U.S. and Canada. Spiny lobsters are less common and are often called rock lobsters. They are found in the Mediterranean and off the coast of South Africa. If you purchase frozen "rock lobster tails," they are from the spiny lobster.