Wicked Good Lobstah Suppah, paht 2 – flex those curry mussels by quornflour

Do not get me wrong here, I like clams. I like a good clam chowder and fried clams on the beach dipped in some tangy tartar sauce; but if I had to choose my favorite mollusk, this kid from Maine would not choose the clam. This kid would choose its dark cousin, the mussel.

As a kid I remember collecting mussels from the beach and dissecting them, perhaps morbid to some, but they are curious little creatures, occasionally you would even find a purl. With a taste similar to a clam, they are not as sweet and do not seem so… is gamey the right word to use here?

Anyway, recently I was co-hosting a lobster feast at a friend’s house and when ordering the lobster, I decided I would also order some of my favorite purly purple mollusks. With 6 pounds on the way, I figured I would do a Duo of Mussels – mostly because it was funny to say and seemed so foodie like and almost fancy.

I decided I would make a red curry mussel and a garlic tomato mussel; though different, the two have a number of similar ingredients and would give an opportunity for different taste buds to enjoy.

For each you will need a 4-5 quart Dutch oven.

The first time I had curry mussels, it was like my mouth lit up, not just because it was spicy hot, but because it was delicious. Though I had never made them myself, my ego could only ask, “seriously, how hard can it be?”

Here is what you need:

  • 3 pounds of mussels
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 crushed garlic cloves
  • Thai Red curry paste – usually around 1 tablespoon per can of coconut milk
  • 2 cans of coconut milk (light coconut milk is ok too)
  • ¼ Cup of sugar
  • 3-4 green onions chopped or cut into “grass”
  • 1 red bell pepper – chopped into ¼” wide and 2″ long pieces
  • 1 yellow bell pepper – chopped into ¼” wide and 2″ long pieces
  • 2 cups of green beans chopped into 2 inch pieces
  • ¼ basil grass (basil leaves cut into thin grass like pieces)
  1. Bring your Dutch oven to temp and add the olive oil, heat until water spits if flicked in, or it becomes thin like water
  2. Turn the temp down to medium and add the garlic and cook until browned
  3. Add curry paste, coconut milk and sugar and mix until there are no paste lumps and it is starting to steam
  4. Add peppers, and green beans and give them a minute to start to soften and for the milk to steam
  5. Add most of the green onion (put a pinch aside for a garnish)
  6. Add the mussels, stir in slightly and place the lid over and let them steam until the mussels all pop open
  7. toss in the basil and serve warm.

These are great with fries (or if you want to be fancy and impress your friends call them “friets”), or over rice, or all on their own.


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