Wow! I took a break from blogging. Life got a little busy (congratulations to my husband for graduating with his masters!, painting a nursery and enjoying the summer weather) but I’m back and I have a lot to share – Sunday #10 & #11!
Speaking of summertime, to kick off the season I made mussels (LES MOULES “ADDIE’s”) for dinner over Memorial Day Weekend. Mussels are great for the summer, they are light but filling and most importantly they take little effort to cook so your kitchen stays cool and the clean up is a breeze – it’s a one pan meal.
Some things to remember about cooking mussels – you want to buy them alive and you want to keep them alive until you add them to the pan. I buy mine the same day and keep them on ice in a bowl & in the refrigerator until needed. Fun Fact: mussels can drown in water so you want to make sure they are not submerged under water. If keeping them for a long period of time over ice you may want to use a colander to prevent them from resting in pools of water.
When cleaning mussels you want to do it quickly – pull their “beards” off and put them back on ice. If a mussel is open, tap it, if the shell closes on it’s own, then it is still alive and can be used in your dish. Discard any mussels if the shells do not close..
This particular recipe is not the traditional white wine base that most people can relate to. In school, we made mussels a couple different ways and I decided to use the recipe that had a tomato base instead. I used canned tomatoes & chicken stock for the broth. I added in chili flakes, lemon juice and parsley for flavor. In hindsight, I should have cooked the broth a little longer before adding in the mussels to let the flavors infuse to a stronger taste.
Steaming mussels is a quick process. Once the mussels open, it’s best to finish the broth with final seasonings and serve immediately. Make sure you have bread, what better way to soak up the yummy broth! French Fries are also good, but sometimes I just can’t do it all – and I’m okay with that I think.
Compliments to the chef (ahem me)! We had Sarah and Luke over for dinner. I received the best compliment from my friend Sarah. Sarah was on the fence with mussels, BUT she came over and was a trooper. She tried them, liked them and I heard might be jumping on the mussel bandwagon… me on the other hand, I may never make that jump.
After a long day in the summer sun, this is the perfect quick meal.