Friday, June 6, 2008

Mussels with Linguini

My Dad was an avid fisherman, loved the ocean and all seafood and shellfish. One of his favorites were mussels, prepared anyway they could be made.. he just really enjoyed them. As a youngster I remember Thursdays nights was a late night work day for Dad. Nothing made him happier, than to come home to large pot of steamed mussels he could then ladle over a great big bowl of linguini, sopping up the delicious juices with crusty Italian bread, while gabbing about his day. I think of him often and miss him terribly.. but I'm always warmed by these remembrances of Dad whenever I serve up my mussels with linguini, and so glad I acquired the love of seafood as much as he did.
Mussels are just so easy to prepare and cooking them is a snap! All you need to do is scrub them well, and remove any of the small beard that may be on some, toss them in a pot with some liquid along with your favorite white wine.. add fresh herbs.. cover with a lid and in 5 minutes steamed mussels for dinner! Thinking of you always,Dad xoxo

2 lbs fresh mussels- scrubbed & debearded
2 shallots chopped
3-4 garlic cloves minced
2 TBLS extra virgin olive oil
1 cup dry white wine
1 cup water or clam juice
2 tsp fresh thyme
juice of 1 lemon
large handful of fresh flat-leaf Italian parsley, finely chopped, reserving some
2 TBLS unsalted butter
ground pepper
1 lb linguini or favorite pasta

Cook linguini according to package directions. Meanwhile, scrub mussels, discard any open mussels that do not close when lightly tapped. Discard any cracked mussels. Remove any of the small beard if any. Heat the olive oil & saute garlic and shallots. Add white wine, water, mussels and fresh herbs, lemon juice, ground pepper and cook in covered pan and steam until shells open, about 5-6 minutes. Add unsalted butter to pot.

The linguini should be ready by now, strain, and toss in remaining parsley. Ladle cooked mussels in their shells and broth over pasta. Toss lightly and serve at once with plenty of nice crusty bread to mop up the delicious juice with. Enjoy!

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