Mussels -Cooking

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The-Porcus
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2003/11/22 18:46:30 (permalink)

Mussels -Cooking

In Canada, the epicentre of Mytilus edulis production is our tiniest province PEI. I think Maine tops the US of A but could be wrong on that. Alas it is hard to find a restaurant that cooks 'em right probably because of petty fears over food poisoning. I'm here to tell you that if there's something really wrong with the mussel(s), either you'll smell it a mile off or, alternatively, it'll be something like paralytic shellfish poisoning in which case, poor sap, any degree of cooking ain't gonna save your sight!

With this lead in to whet your appetite, let me advise that really all you have to do is put a few pounds of the victims (you will want to have picked over them, scrupulously testing whether they are alive and maybe sniffing a bit) in a nice big covered pot with an inch or less of water and wine (or beer) and chopped onion and garlic and bring to a boil. As soon as the lid jiggles, shut off and by the time you get the pot to the table, they're done. Oh you may get a few that are not quite deceased (i.e. have not opened)and if you really want you can give these survivors a quick extra shot of heat.

#1

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    Michael Hoffman
    Double-chop Porterhouse
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    RE: Mussels -Cooking 2003/11/22 19:35:34 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by The-Porcus

    In Canada, the epicentre of Mytilus edulis production is our tiniest province PEI. I think Maine tops the US of A but could be wrong on that. Alas it is hard to find a restaurant that cooks 'em right probably because of petty fears over food poisoning. I'me here to tell you that if there's something really wrong with the mussel(s), either you'll smell it a mile off or, alternatively, it'll be something like paralytic shellfish poisoning in which case, poor sap, any degree of cooking ain't gonna save your sight!

    With this lead in to whet your appetite, let me advise that really all you have to do is put a few pounds of the victims (you will want to have pciked over them scrupously testing whether they are alive and maybe sniffing a bit) in a nice big covered pot with an inch or less of water and wine (or beer) and chopped onion and garlic and bring to a boil. As soon as the lid jiggles, shut off and by the time you get the pot to the table, they're done. Oh you may get a few that are not quite deceased (i.e. have not opened)and if you really want you can give these survivors a quick extra shot of heat.



    I like to add a bit of olive oil and some freshly-ground black pepper to the wine and water when I steam mussels. I think the oil adds some body when dipping the mussels in the broth, and the pepper adds a kick.
    #2
    seafarer john
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    RE: Mussels -Cooking 2003/11/22 22:54:25 (permalink)
    PEI mussels. white wine, shallots, butter, black pepper, loaf of crusty bread = Nirvana
    #3
    tiki
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    RE: Mussels -Cooking 2003/11/23 08:43:03 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by The-Porcus

    In Canada, the epicentre of Mytilus edulis production is our tiniest province PEI. I think Maine tops the US of A but could be wrong on that. Alas it is hard to find a restaurant that cooks 'em right probably because of petty fears over food poisoning. I'm here to tell you that if there's something really wrong with the mussel(s), either you'll smell it a mile off or, alternatively, it'll be something like paralytic shellfish poisoning in which case, poor sap, any degree of cooking ain't gonna save your sight!

    With this lead in to whet your appetite, let me advise that really all you have to do is put a few pounds of the victims (you will want to have picked over them, scrupulously testing whether they are alive and maybe sniffing a bit) in a nice big covered pot with an inch or less of water and wine (or beer) and chopped onion and garlic and bring to a boil. As soon as the lid jiggles, shut off and by the time you get the pot to the table, they're done. Oh you may get a few that are not quite deceased (i.e. have not opened)and if you really want you can give these survivors a quick extra shot of heat.




    EXACTLY the recipe ive used on both coasts of America!!!--and they are soooooo gooood!!!We always use a white wine---some of the same we drink with them--and lots of sourdough to dip in the broth---im NOT on Atkins yet!
    #4
    BooBooMaGoo
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    RE: Mussels -Cooking 2004/04/07 15:04:36 (permalink)
    White wine, clam juice, chopped onion, garlic, red pepper flakes, and most importantly FRESH THYME ........ and tons of crusty bread to dip in the juice! MMMMMMMM
    #5
    lleechef
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    RE: Mussels -Cooking 2004/04/07 15:30:23 (permalink)
    Fall River, MA has a large Portuguese population. After eating mussels there I re-created the dish for the restaurant and they were a hit.

    Saute onion and garlic in olive oil. Add some chopped choriso and brown. Add some canned plum tomatoes, mussels, a little white wine, hot pepper flakes. Cover and cook. Add chopped cilantro before serving.

    A nice change from the traditional white wine preparation!
    #6
    seafarer john
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    RE: Mussels -Cooking 2004/04/07 21:37:51 (permalink)
    It's the crusty bread for dipping that make those mussel dishes so great!
    #7
    lleechef
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    RE: Mussels -Cooking 2004/04/07 22:48:10 (permalink)
    Almost every Friday night when I lived in France we would have "moules frites".........the mussels cooked in the classic white wine, garlic, butter, parsley, and hand-cut-fried in lard/oil French fries and nice crusty baguette. Fries dipped in the mussel juice are fabulous also!
    #8
    meowzart
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    RE: Mussels -Cooking 2004/04/08 11:19:16 (permalink)
    When I was in Niagara-on-the-Lake, I had PEI mussels. They were huge and delicious!! They prepared them in a way I thought was unique. The broth was creamy with long strands of carmelized onions. I ended up just pulling out all the meat up front and eating it like soup. It was SO good!!

    There is a place across the street from where I work that serves the classic moules frites. I second the french fry dipping in the broth! Divine!!

    I LOVE mussels!!!
    #9
    howard8
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    RE: Mussels -Cooking 2004/04/08 14:29:01 (permalink)
    I love mussels and prepare them the classic way; little white wine, EVOO, garlic, shallots and red pepper. Sometimes I will add heavy cream and reduce the sauce which is especially tasty.

    Recently Julia had a chef on her show who prepared mussels a little different.
    He placed them a very hot cast iron pan and as they steamed open some of the mussel liquor would hit the pan, providing some steam. The pan was uncovered. When the mussels opened he simply served them with drawn butter. His idea in this simple preparation was to have the mussels be the prevalent taste and not the broth as in other preparations. The mussels were also undiluted in that no garlic or broth etc. covered them.

    As soon as I get some mussels I am going to try this simple method. Julia seemed to really like the ones she tasted.
    #10
    rumbelly
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    RE: Mussels -Cooking 2004/04/08 16:18:32 (permalink)
    I had always cooked mussels with the white wine garlic thing. On a trip to Nova Scotia, I was surprised to see most of the places we dined at just served them steamed with drawn butter, lemons and crusty bread on the side. I guess them being out of the water a short time ago helped but they were so sweet and tasty. If I am doing the wine-garlic thing I like a pinch of curry in there.
    I ignore them in the hot months as they tend to get small and they have no shelf life. And yes you know when mussels are badd
    #11
    Michael Hoffman
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    RE: Mussels -Cooking 2004/04/08 16:42:10 (permalink)
    When I was a kid I could never understand how anyone could actually eat a mussel. That's because I used to see them all the time being dropped on the rocks by gulls that would do that to open them up in order to eat them. You have not lived till you've seen the yucky yellow of a pulverized mussel slowly oozing off a rock into the water.

    Many years later, my wife (she, too, grew up seeing mussels ooze) and I were invited to the home of a friend for dinner. When she told us she was serving mussels as an appetizer we wondered how to get through the upcoming ordeal. What a surprise. There was nothing yellow and nothing oozing. Neither of us had ever seen cooked mussels before.

    To this day I salute Earnie Young, who turned us on to these beautiful bivalves.
    #12
    carlton pierre
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    RE: Mussels -Cooking 2005/12/08 06:27:15 (permalink)
    I fixed mussels the traditional way last night for the wife and I along with the crusty french bread and wine for dinner along with some stir fried veggies. Actually, this is a rather easy dish to make, the results are fantastic, and it feels rather romantic.
    #13
    Sundancer7
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    RE: Mussels -Cooking 2005/12/08 20:36:16 (permalink)
    http://www.carrabbas.com/menu_textonly.asp

    here in Knoxville I certainly enjoy the mussels at Carrabbas.. The mussels are great and the gravy with them along with their break is super.

    Paul E. Smith
    Knoxville, TN
    #14
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