I had something interesting in my fridge yesterday…
So I haven’t really cooked with Mussels before but after realizing that I hadn’t blogged something I cooked myself that wasn’t potato pancakes for 9 days I decided it was time to take drastic measures. I ambled into Whole Foods and asked for a pound of mussels. When asking how I should store them until today I realized that they were alive (uh, duh) and would need to be in water (double duh). Yep, I am the awkward party. Anyways, that’s how I wound up with a container of mussels in my fridge.
Then I started thinking about how they were alive. Then I started to psych myself out. I almost named them. Almost.
Tonight I made a dish out of a self published French cookbook my Mom found at a book sale and sent me. Isn’t it cute?
The first thing I had to do was get rid of the sand, grit, and breads. I dissolved a tea spoon of salt in warm water. Then I mixed the warm salt water in a large bowl with cold water. I scrubbed the mussels and placed them in the water bowl. When they were all in the bowl I cut a lemon in half and squeezed it into the bowl. Once I was done squeezing the lemon I placed them in the water bowl.
The recipe calls for a basic white wine based marinara sauce.
You will need:
Red pepper flakes, 2 minced cloves of garlic, half a lemon (ignore the S&P), half a stick of butter, half a container of cut tomatoes with no salt added, and a 1/4 cup of white wine.
I used this kind from South Africa (and obviously, Trader Joe’s).
I felt like I was committing a small act of genocide. They were opening and for a fleeting moment I thought about keeping one in the fridge as a pet but then I remembered I already have a pet and I just womened up and did it.
This recipe makes two servings. Before I made the sauce I cooked two servings worth of brown spaghetti. Once the mussels opened up I combined the pasta and the sauce. Topped it off with parm.
This was a delicious dinner! It was pretty simple to make despite my nerves. I used only one pot so clean up was really simple. The mussels tasted like a summer day in Massachusetts. Using the white wine sauce as a based made the marinara extra special. The only change I made from my version and the cookbook version was the brown spaghetti. Their recipe calls for angel hair pasta, but I just used what I had on hand. Mussels are a great treat and actually are pretty cheap when purchased by the pound. A nice little treat for the hard studying souls.