Some of my favorite memories from studying abroad in Copenhagen involve cooking with my roommate Susan and her visiting parents, Lilly and Lars. They adopted me a few weeks into our time there, and we’ve kept in touch since 🙂 So of course when I finally got a chance to go back to Copenhagen last month, L&L and I had to find some time to cook dinner together! They gave me a super easy, delicious mussels recipe, which I had to share. I also used this recipe as a guideline:
3 lbs fresh mussels
1/3 cup all purpose flour
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup chopped shallots or onions
1/3 cup chopped carrots
5-6 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 cup chopped canned tomatoes, drained
1/3 cup chopped parsley
1/2 teaspoon saffron threads
1 tablespoon fresh thyme
1 cup white wine (I used a dry Riesling)
2 teaspoons of kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Put the mussels in a large bowl, and mix the flour with enough water to cover the mussels. Apparently this forces out the sand from the mussels – sweet! Once they’ve soaked for 30 minutes, they should be good to go. Rinse off the mussels, and pull off the “beards” – the little fuzzy tufts that stick out of the mussels sometimes. Throw away any mussels that are cracked, or not completely closed. I felt mean doing this. But I would feel worse if they got me sick.
In a big pot with a lid, heat the butter and olive oil on medium heat. Toss in the shallots and carrots, and cook for about 5 minutes. Toss in the garlic, and cook for a few more minutes until the shallots are almost translucent.
Add in everything else, except the mussels. Bring the broth to a boil.
Add the mussels, and carefully mix by spooning some of the broth over the mussels. If you have a deeper pot that what I used, you can also just put the lid on, and toss the mixture a little. You want to make sure all the mussels get some brothy love. BUT BE CAREFUL!! You just brought the broth to a boil, which means unhappy things for your skin if any droplets fall out of the pan from overeager mixing (been there).
Cover the pot, and let the mussels cook for 8-10 minutes. Almost all the shells should’ve opened up. Throw away any that don’t open up. Scoop some of the finished mussels into a bowl, and be sure to get some of the broth – it’s delish!
Tip for eating: pick your favorite mussel, eat the meat, and use half a shell as a spoon to scoop out the rest of the mussels.
I’d also discard all the used shells (both the cracked/ inedible ones, and the ones you’ve happily wolfed down) in a separate trash bag, and take out the trash immediately – it’ll stink up the room otherwise!
Nutritional Info (1/3 of recipe)*: 450 calories, 20g fat: 25g carbs, 30g protein.
*this does not mean I only ate 1/3 of the recipe. I definitely ate more than half. Oops. It’s okay, always good to give yourself a break from dieting. And it’s the weekend! 🙂