Last weekend I took a day off and had a long weekend in Schull, West Cork. While the weather wasn’t the best (of course it would rain on the day I took off), we still had a great time chilling out, eating, reading and watching movies. On Friday night we decided to make the most of the great fish shop on the main street and buy a big bag of mussels. We often get them when we’re down there as the fish is so fresh and only has a short journey of a couple hundred yards from the pier to the main street.
Mussels are extremely quick and easy to make, but a lot of people avoid making them as they perceive them to be awkward to prepare which couldn’t be further from the truth. I made and blogged Moules Marinere last year from Schull, but this time I decided to give it an oriental twist to warm and cheer us up with fresh chilli, lime juice and coriander. It worked really well and took no time at all to make.
We had chips with our mussels and ate them with the seasoned chili, lime and coriander butter we cooked the mussels in. It make sounds a bit strange having butter on your chips, but honestly if you try this you won’t regret it… Plus it means you don’t have to make a separate sauce, and who can say no to one less job in the kitchen?
- You will have a good bit of butter left over- I used a teaspoon of mine the next day on a piece of pan fried seabass, you could also use it as a seasoning on a steak or chicken breast. You could also use it in sandwiches, or on baked potatoes etc.
- You will also have liquid left over the mussel pot, this would be the perfect base for a fishy soup, stew or chowder. You can freeze this if you don’t need it straight away.
Ingredients (Serves 2):
1 kg Mussels
1 glass white wine
Juice of 1 1/2 limes
2 cloves garlic
2 tbsp olive oil
Potatoes sliced into fingers (as many as you think you’ll eat, about 4-5 large potatoes- I used Maris Piper but Roosters work well too)
1 large handful chopped coriander
Zest of 2 limes
1 red chilli deseeded and finely chopped
Juice of 1/2 lime
1.. Put the chopped potatoes in a large oven proof dish and coat with the olive oil. Put them in an oven at 190C stirring/shaking every 10 minutes to ensure cooked evenly. These will take about 40-50 minutes.
2.Scrub mussels removing any dirt. If any are open at this point, throw them out. (If any are closed after cooking, throw them out too).
3. Throw about 25g of the coriander butter into a large deep pot and add the garlic and let it simmer for a minute or two. Add the wine and let the alcohol cook off for 2 minutes. Add the juice of 1 lime and add in the mussels, put the lid on the pot. Stir every 30 seconds with a ladle. These will take only 2-3 minutes to cook, they are done when all the shells are open.
4. Serve the mussels in a bowl with a few ladles of the juices. Squeeze the remaining juice of 1/2 lime over the chips and serve with a spoon of the coriander butter (I know it sounds so wrong, but really it’s not!)