‘ Simple flavors of France all year around’
My husband and I love the taste of mussels and the French classic moules mariniere is a staple recipe in our household. The mussels are cooked in a simple broth of dry white wine with a base of garlic and shallots fried in butter. You can add some fresh parsley or even some other herbs (we used dill this time), add it in the mussels and you’re ready after about five minutes of steaming. Served in a large pot, we eat the warm mussels and use the empty shell to scoop some flavorful broth into our mouths. Fresh mussels are shiny with no fishy smell that take on the flavor of whatever sauce they’re prepared in. Mussels can be eaten during any season, so I wanted to share this recipe now, even though the pictures were taken in August. Back then, we decided to make a simple evening snack eaten on the pier and take a refreshing dip in the lake just before the sun began to set. Siena kept fetching sticks from the water and she just loves to swim with us side by side. This recipe takes about 10 minutes to make and you cannot eat this dish without scooping some grilled sourdough bread into the sauce of the mussels, as it is simply the best part.
- 1kg live mussels (cleaned)
- Pinch of salt
- 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 2 shallots finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon butter
- Handful of herbs (parsley is commonly used, but we used dill)
- 150ml dry white wine
Wash the mussels thoroughly in a bowl under cold running water, removing any barnacles and beards that are still present. Discard any mussels that float, including those that are closed. Drain the mussels in a sieve.
In a large pot melt the butter. Add the shallots, garlic, and salt, and cook until the shallots and garlic are soft for a few minutes. Add the wine and dill and bring to a boil. Add the mussels to the pot, stirring them a few times, then cover and steam for about 5 minutes until the mussels open, lifting the lid midway during cooking to give them a stir. You can also give the pan a good shake every now and then. Meanwhile, brush some olive oil on both sides of the sourdough bread. Grill each side so it becomes crispy. Read to serve. Note- do not eat any of the mussels that are fully closed.