Years ago I traveled to Nashville to help care for my nephew while my sister went to NYC to celebrate her 30th birthday with her girlfriends. Did I say YEARS ago, oh yes, it was YEARS ago when my sweet baby sister turned 30! My brother-in-law was working so I took care of Jackson during the day, what a joy! My sister had been teaching Jackson sign language before he learned how to talk. I didn't know the "signs" very well for "all finished", "I'm hungry", "thank you", "more", etc., let's just suffice to say his arms were really tired by the time I left.
My brother in law, Jeff is a fabulous cook (remember the Beer Eyed Black Eyed Peas) and one of the many things I love about him is his willingness to be my guinea pig when it comes to food. What better time to try something new! We had a beautiful dinner of fresh steamed mussels in white wine with crusty French Bread. Shamefully, this is the first time I have made that dish again in many many YEARS.
If preparing mussels is something new for you, be not afraid! They are delicious and super easy! Here is a website I found for you with good basic info on how to select, store and cook mussels Discover Mussels. And here is my recipe. Enjoy!
Steamed Mussels with Garlic, Thyme, Saffron, White Wine and Butter adapted from Tyler Florence recipe
3 pounds mussels
Extra-virgin Olive Oil
4 T Butter
4 Garlic cloves, minced
6 Green Onions, chopped, separate white and green parts
2 T fresh Thyme, pulled from stems
6-8 strands Saffron
1-1/2 C dry White Wine
1/4 C Fresh flat-leaf Parsley, chopped
Rinse the mussels under cold running water while scrubbing with a vegetable brush. Remove the stringy mussels beards with your thumb and index finger as you wash them. Discard any mussels with broken shells or that will not close when tapped.
Heat 1 T olive oil and 2 T butter in a large pot over medium heat. Add white tops of green onions, garlic, thyme along with saffron and cook for about 5 minutes. Add the mussels and give everything a good toss. Add the white wine. Cover and steam and steam over med-high heat for about 10 minutes, until the mussels are open. Stir occasionally so that all the mussels are in contact with the heat. Add the remaining butter and drizzle with remaining olive oil, green parts of green onions to the sauce in the pot and swirl to incorporate. Season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle with the parsley and serve immediately with good crusty French Bread!