The judges of the 2022 Amateur Seafood Cooking Contest at the 75th Maine Lobster Festival had the tough job of choosing between five contestants’ original recipes, each showcasing seafood found in Maine waters.

This year’s winning recipe was created by Clair Pagnano, combining some of the best elements of summer in Maine: fresh fruits, greens, and of course — Maine lobster.

Summer Peach, Burrata and Lobster Salad


  • 2 four-ounce balls fresh burrata cheese
  • 4-8 fresh ripe summer peaches
  • Picked lobster meat from 2 cooked lobsters
  • 3 ounces of Serrano ham
  • 1/2 cup chopped roasted pistachios
  • Arugula greens
  • Good-quality extra virgin olive oil
  • Aged balsamic vinegar
  • 4-6 tablespoons salted butter


  1. Place a layer of arugula greens to cover the entirety of a large serving platter.
  2. Slice peaches and sauté in 2-3 tablespoons of butter on medium heat, in a large skillet, until peaches are warmed through and start to release their juices. Keep warm in pan.
  3. Place cooked lobster meat in medium skillet with 2-3 tablespoons of butter and heat over low heat until just warm.
  4. Pour warmed peaches over arugula and scatter lobster meat on top. Lay Serrano ham in thin pieces over peaches and lobster.
  5. Tear burrata into pieces and spread across peaches, ham, and lobster. Sprinkle chopped pistachios on top.
  6. Drizzle olive oil generously all over salad and lightly sprinkle with aged balsamic vinegar. Let salad sit for 15-20 minutes. Serve family-style as a light first course or as a lunch with toasted bread. A little sparkling wine with some fresh blueberries is a great drink to accompany. Serves 4-6.

2022 Recipe Runners-Up

The other amateur chefs who wowed the judges with their recipes were:

  • 2nd Place – Barbara Matteson (Lobster Panzanella)
  • 3rd Place – Samantha Philbrook (Lobster Matinibisque with Basil)
  • 4th Place – Claire Pressman (Seafood Galettes)
  • 5th Place – Maynard Stanley (Lobster & Crab Sopaipillas)

Submit Your Recipe for 2023

Want to show off your culinary skills at the 2023 Maine Lobster Festival? To compete for the grand prize money (as well as braggin’ rights!), you can find details about eligibility, requirements and the selection process on the Main Events page of the website. We hope to see you next summer in Rockland, Maine, from Aug. 2-6 at the Maine Lobster Festival.