Eating Mussels always makes me feel like I’m on holiday in France. There is just something about a steaming pan full of mussels in front of you, taking your time and enjoying a nice glass of wine. No reason to be scared to prepare them yourself because with the following tips it is super easy!
This post contains affiliate links which means if you purchase something through my site I will be able to grab a couple of pennies at no extra cost to you.
A good clean is really important
Cleaning mussels is a little bit of work but it is not hard at all. Just fill up your sink with fresh cold water and let the little buggers swim for a bit. One by one take them out of the water and remove all dirt you see on the outside. The beard like bit you can just pull off and out. Make sure you do the following things:
- If the shell is broken, throw it away!
- If the shell is open, tap it on the counter top. Most of the time it will close but if it doesn’t, throw it away!
This way you are sure you don’t get any bad boys on your plate.
The classic way to eat Mussels
In a large pan, fry 1 large finely diced onion in a bit of butter until translucent but not brown, add 2 cloves of minced garlic and slowly fry for about 2 minutes. Add mussels ( if you eat mussels as your main, you will need 1 kg per person), a sprig of thyme and 1 bay-leaf. Poor in about 3 tbsp white wine. Cook mussels for about 5 minutes with the lid on. If they are open they are done. Shake the pan a couple of times during cooking. Transfer mussels to a large serving dish ( or individual mussel pans). Remove thyme and bay-leaf from cooking liquid and bring to a boil. Ad is about 1 tbsp of cold butter and whisk vigorously until butter is melted and incorporated in the cooking liquid. Poor sauce over mussels, sprinkle with fresh parsley and enjoy!
Bloody Mary Mussels
Heat 2 tbsp of olive oil in a large pan. Add 2 minced cloves of garlic, 2 finely sliced celery stalks and 1 washed, de-seeded thinly sliced red pepper ( take a milder pepper for less heat and a stronger pepper for more heat). Fry on medium heat for about 2-3 minutes. Make sure you don’t burn the garlic! Add 2 kg ( for 2 persons) cleaned mussels ( like described earlier in this post), about 50 ml vodka and 350 grams tomato frito. Mix it all together well and cook with the lid on for about 5-8 minutes. Shake the pan regularly. Serve with bread to dip up the wonderful sauce and a green salad. So Delicious!
Clean the mussels thoroughly like described above. In a large pan on medium heat melt about 1 tbsp butter. Add about 4 anchovies and stir until they almost completely melted. Place the mussels (2 kg) in the pan, put the lid on and cook for 5-8 minutes while regularly shaking the pan. Throw away all mussels that did not open. Place mussels on a big serving dish and sprinkle with fresh dill. Garnish with some more anchovies. Stir together 125 ml of creme fraiche with 3 tbsp of horseradish and salt and pepper to taste. Dip the mussels in the sauce, yum!
Thoroughly clean 2 kg of mussels like described above. Heat 2 tbsp of olive oil in a large pan and add 1 sliced zucchini and 4 finely sliced shallots and cook for about 3 minutes. Add mussels, sprinkle with black pepper and poor in 100 ml dry white wine and 50 ml cognac ( brandy). Put lid on pan and cook for about 5-8 minutes whilst regularly shaking the pan. Remove the unopened mussels. Put mussels with zucchini and shallots on a large serving dish and cover with tin-foil to keep them as warm as possible. Turn up the heat and reduce the cooking liquid for about 4 minutes. Add 15 grams of fresh thyme ( if you use dry, 1 or 2 tsp will do but make sure you add it while reducing the liquid to give the thyme a chance to get soft). Stir in 200 ml creme fraiche and if you like it boozy, add a splash of cognac. Season with salt and pepper to taste and pour over the mussels.
This little recipe is perfect for people that like the flavor of mussels but can’t stand the sight and/or the texture. Clean and cook mussels like explained above. You can add a splash of dry white wine to them if you like or you can just cook them in their own liquid. You don’t need 1 kg per person for this recipe. If you are feeding a crowd I think 1 kg is enough. Take the mussels out of their shell and roughly chop them up. In a large bowl mix mussels with 3 diced tomatoes, 1 large finely diced onion and 1 finely chopped red bell pepper. Poor over 6 tbsp of good quality olive oil and 1 tbsp of white wine vinegar. Add 1 tsp of dried oregano and salt and pepper to taste. If you would like it more acidic add some more white wine vinegar. Spoon mixture in the shells and serve.
Want more recipes?
There are a lot more recipes like these in my arsenal so if you want to see more please let me know by commenting on this post! Of course you can give all kinds of suggestions about all kinds of food! If it’s recipes that I’ve tried and love myself I will make sure to write them down for you!