Mussels are inexpensive, and because most of those you’ll find in the market are farmed rather than gathered in the wild, they don’t require debearding and scrubbing, making them super fast to prepare. Two good reasons to give them a try if you don’t make mussels often.
Mussels with Fennel and Italian Beer
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 small head of fennel diced small
- 2 shallots chopped fine
- 1 garlic clove chopped
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 pound mussels washed and beards removed
- 1 cup Italian beer such as Peroni
- 2 tablespoons tarragon chopped
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter at room temperature
- 1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
- a few slices of crusty bread to serve
- As seen on: Giada In Italy, Episode 5. What Would Nonno Dino Make?
- Heat a 3½ quart soup pan over medium high heat. Add the olive oil and heat another 30 seconds.To the hot pan add the fennel and shallot. Sweat, stirring often with a wooden spoon, for 2 minutes or until fragrant and beginning to soften. Add the garlic and salt and cook another 2 minutes. Add the mussels and stir gently once or twice in order to coat in the oil. Add the beer and stir one more time. Cover with a tight fitting lid and cook for about 4 minutes, stirring halfway through, or until the mussels have opened. Discard any unopened mussels. Stir in the tarragon and the butter and top with the black pepper.
- Serve with crusty bread to dip in the sauce.