Beer Steamed Mussels

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Let me start off by saying that I love mussels pretty much any way. I spent my summers as a kid living on the east coast, picking mussels and digging clams at low tide, and after soaking them in a bucket of oatmeal water, rinsing them, and steaming them in some water, I devoured them with vinegar and/or butter. Simplicity at its finest. But as you might have guessed, this is a little fancier, a little more of a luxury dish. And delicious in an oh-so-fancy way. Click on through to find out how to make these beautiful morsels!

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My boyfriend is an amazing cook. After 7 years in the industry, he ought to be. After showing up at my door with 4 lbs of mussels, we figured that we should probably make something delicious – enter beer steamed mussels. You will need 1 tall boy of beer of your choice, 1/2-3/4 cup heavy cream, 4 lbs of mussels (washed and de-bearded), thyme, basil, a clove of garlic, one medium sized onion, and some butter, along with salt, pepper, and chili flakes to taste.

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Start off by cleaning your mussels. You’ll want to rinse them thoroughly and give the shells a little wash to remove excess salt, any dirt, and their beards – those are the little threads that help mussels hold onto rocks and other mussels so they’re not swept away at tide change. If the shell is open after tapping it lightly on the counter or broken, it’s no good and will need to be thrown out.

Mince 1 clove of garlic, 4 large basil leaves, and strip 4-5 sprigs of thyme. These can, of course, be altered to taste. If you only have dried basil and thyme, never fear – you’ll need 1-1.25 tsp of dried thyme, and 1.5 tsp dried basil, approximately.

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Dice your medium onion. In a large stock pot, melt 1 tbsp butter, and add the onion, garlic, thyme, and basil. Saute lightly over medium heat, until the onion starts to brown a little. Deglaze the pot with a splash of beer. Once all the flavourful bits have been unstuck from the pot, add the rest of your beer, 1/2-3/4 cup heavy cream, and stir until combined. Add salt, pepper, and chili flakes to taste. Add your mussels into the broth, and stir to combine everything. Cover the pot and reduce the heat to medium low.

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Cooking time will vary, anywhere from 5-10 minutes. Open your pot occasionally to give the mussels a stir. You are looking for them to open up. When they are all open, you are ready to serve!

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Serve hot with the broth and some crusty bread! 3 of us devoured this last night – once you dig in, you’ll know why! ENJOY!


BEER STEAMED MUSSELS
RECIPE

Cook time: 35 minutes
Serves: 3-4

Ingredients

  • 4 lbs mussels, cleaned
  • 1 tallboy of beer
  • 1/2-3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 4 large basil leaves (1.5 tsp dried basil)
  • 4-5 sprigs thyme (1-1.25 tsp dried thyme)
  • 1 medium onion
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Chili flakes

Directions

  1. Clean your mussels by rinsing them under cool water and scrubbing the shells. Remove any beard you find. Discard broken or open mussels. Leave in a colander to drain.
  2. Strip thyme off the sprigs, and mince 1 clove of garlic and 4 large basil leaves. Set aside.
  3. Dice 1 medium onion.
  4. Melt 1 tbsp butter in a stock pot over medium heat and add onion, thyme, garlic, and basil. Saute until the onion just begins to brown.
  5. Deglaze the bottom of the pot with a splash of beer, stirring to loosen anything stuck to the bottom of the pot.
  6. Add the mussels to the pot.
  7. Add the rest of the beer and 1/2-3/4 cup of heavy cream.
  8. Season with salt, pepper, and chili flakes as desired. Stir until combined.
  9. Cover with lid and reduce heat to medium low for 5-10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  10. Mussles are done when their shells have all opened!
  11. Serve with crusty bread, to soak up all that delicious broth!
  12. ENJOY!

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