Have you ever cooked mussels? It’s not as difficult as you might think. These Mussels in White Wine Sauce are quick, easy, and impressive.
My family’s new tradition is to have a seafood feast on Christmas Eve. This year it was my brother’s famous spiced steamed shrimp and homemade cocktail sauce, my dad’s fried oysters, a riff on Seafood Sausage Gumbo (minus the sausage), cod dipped in Parmesan and polenta (grits) à la Patricia Wells, crab bites, and these mussels in white wine sauce. I’m not ashamed to admit we also had deep-fried hushpuppies. And they were delicious. Merry Christmas to me!
My 14-year-old nephew loves mussels and I made the mistake of telling him I’d cooked some just for him. When the mussels were ready, he poured them into a serving bowl and whisked them away. A little while later, I heard my brother yelling at him. Apparently, my nephew thought ALL of the mussels were for him!
One of the best parts of eating mussels is dipping some crusty bread in the leftover sauce. If you can afford the carbs, try it.
Mussels in White Wine Sauce (Moules Marinière)
Mussels are quickly steamed in a broth featuring white wine, shallots, garlic, herbs, and a hint of cream
- 2 sprigs fresh parsley
- 1 sprig fresh thyme
- 1 1/2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 large shallot finely chopped (about 3 tablespoons)
- 2 cloves garlic finely chopped
- 1/2 cup dry white wine
- 2 tablespoons heavy cream
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic pepper or freshly ground black pepper
- 2 pounds live mussels scrubbed, rinsed, and debearded if necessary
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
Tie together the parsley and thyme sprigs with kitchen twine.
Heat a large wide saucepan or deep skillet over medium-low heat. Add the olive oil and shallots. Cook, stirring, for about 1 minute or until the shallots begin to soften. Add the garlic and cook another minute or so.
Add the wine, cream, salt, and pepper. Stir well. Add the herb sprigs and bring the mixture to a boil.
Add the mussels and cover the pan. Cook until the mussels have opened, about 5 minutes.
Remove the pan from the heat and toss out any mussels that didn't open. Discard the herb sprigs. Pour the mussels and their liquid into a deep serving bowl and sprinkle with the chopped parsley. Serve immediately.
If you can afford the carbs, serve the mussels with crusty bread to dip in the sauce.
For a more luxurious sauce, replace the olive oil with unsalted butter. Place the butter in the pan and let it melt before adding the shallots. Note this will add more saturated fat to the dish.