Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Good Eats Challenge Week 19: Mussels

So I've been dreading this Good Eats Challenge because I'm a little squeamish about shellfish (OK, I'm down right insanely picky about everything but that is what this challenge is addressing). So far on this first time journey I've had meatloaf (loved it!), shrimp cocktail (delicious!), and soup (not amazing but satisfying) so I figure there is a first time for everything. The recipe was exceedingly simple and easy to make and (i'll admit) not too bad.

Here's the recipe


  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 1 large leek, cleaned, trimmed, and chopped
  • Pinch kosher salt
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 20 mussels
  • 1 ripe tomato, seeded and chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups white wine
  • Chopped parsley


  • 8-quart nonreactive, stainless steel stockpot
  • Metal colander or steamer insert


In the stockpot, sweat the garlic, leeks, and salt in the olive oil until softened over medium-low heat.

 Place the mussels in the colander and spray them with cold water to remove any excess dirt or grit. Remove any beards with a pair of needle-nose pliers.
Add the chopped tomato and the wine to the stockpot and turn the heat to medium high, and bring to a simmer. 

Insert the colander of mussels into the stockpot and cover. After 3 minutes, check to see if the mussels have opened. If some are still closed, cover the pot, and cook for an additional 30 seconds. Discard any unopened mussels.

Place the mussels in a serving bowl. Remove 10 mussels from their shells and add them to the stockpot. Using a stick blender or a bar blender, puree the mussels until the liquid is of a sauce-like consistency.

Pour the sauce over the mussels and garnish with chopped parsley. Serve with a loaf of crusty bread.

Daniel was a good sport and tried them first

Since he didn't run out of the room screaming I figured they couldn't be too bad so I tried a few. I have to say they were pretty tasty. Some were more bitter than others but the sauce was really what made the dish. I think I ate half a loaf of bread sopping it up. YUM! All in all I say I wouldn't be afraid to try mussels again but I don't think I'd add them to my weekly menu. The sauce however would make a great stew base which I just may have to try one of these days soon. Anyone else tried something they didn't think they would like recently and found out they were wrong? I was shocked how much I liked the meatloaf (I know, weird right?) I'm thinking of doing an all Good Eats Thanksgiving this year. I'm working on the menu now. 

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