- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 pounds mussels, cleaned
- 1 lemon, juiced and zested
- 2 cups white wine
- ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- ½ teaspoon dried basil
- Crusty, whole-grain bread or baguette (optional)
- Lemon wedges (optional)
Mussel Cleaning Instructions
- Mussels need to breathe. After bringing them home from the store, immediately unwrap mussels and inspect them. Discard any mussel that is chipped, broken or damaged. Also, discard any opened mussels that don’t tightly close when you tap them. Place mussels in a bowl covered with a damp towel in the fridge.
- Just before cooking, soak mussels in fresh water for about 20 minutes to let them expel sand.
- Most mussels have what is commonly called a “beard” made of fibers that emerge from the mussel’s shell. To remove it, hold the mussel in one hand and grasp the beard with the other. Give the beard a sharp yank toward the hinge end of the mussel. (Don’t pull toward the opening end of the mussel, or you could tear and kill the mussel.) Discard the beards.
- By hand, transfer the mussels from the water into a fresh bowl of clean, cold water. (Don’t use a strainer, or you’ll end up pouring the filtered sand back on top of the mussels.)
- Use a firm brush to brush off any additional sand, barnacles or other oceanic attachments. Rinse the mussels under cool tap water and set aside. Dry with a towel before cooking.
- In a large pot, heat olive oil and garlic; cook for about 1 minute, until garlic is fragrant.
- Add clean mussels, lemon juice, lemon zest, white wine, red pepper flakes and basil.
- Cover and simmer over medium heat until mussels are steamed open, about 4 to 6 minutes. Cook time depends on how long it takes the mussels to open—it might take less time, based on stovetop performance.
- Remove pot from heat and discard unopened mussels. Serve with crusty bread and lemon wedges.
Suggested Utensils; Large pot
- Prep Time: 35
- Cook Time: 10
- Category: Mussels