Mussels are not only sustainable, and they are also reasonably priced. Do not be intimidated! They are extremely easy too, you just need to know how to clean them. Soaking them in cold water for at least 20 minutes helps to get the grit out. I go over every mussel to make sure that they are closed(discard any open ones) and then scrub the mussels and remove any beards.
Mussels are a romantic meal for my man and I. We had one of our first dates at Cafe Brussels, a charming albeit retro, Belgian place in the west village which has since closed. I can not decide which I like better, the brothy mussels or the crispy french fries. Olive oil baked potatoes are perfect for a home-style version of the bistro classic and they get really crispy too!
For the mussels
- I minced 4 cloves of garlic and
- 1 onion(this is a lot of onion if you prefer less you can use a shallot) and sauteed them until soft and translucent
- then in a large pot I added 2 pounds of cleaned mussels
- 1 cup of white wine and brought to a boil then steamed them for about 10 minutes.
- So simple. So good.
For the olive oil potato fries:
My mom uses olive oil in everything. Her olive oil baked potatoes are a summer time staple and go great with quick meals like hamburgers. Just cut up potatoes, add olive oil and a bit of salt and freshly ground pepper. The secret is a thick roasting pan(she uses a glass perex) and she bakes them for about an hour at 325 and tosses them a few times.