Brian (hubby) makes the best mussels I've had anywhere between here and France, whichever way around the world you go. This is how he does it. This recipe serves two as a main course, takes about 30 minutes to prepare and 5 minutes to cook.
The thorough cleaning of the mussels is vital to this dish so a) you have the perfect buttery Provencal sauce to dunk your crusty french bread into, and b) eliminating any debris, sand and grit when eating your mussels.
Scrape the mussel shells with a parring knife to smooth and remove debris. Run your fingers along the edge of the shells and feel for any furry membranes, i.e. the beard, and then pull off.
Then check the integrity of your mussels. If the shell is tightly closed it's good. If a mussel's shell is all the way open - discard it. If it is partially open, then tap it a couple of times with your knife - if it closes up, then it's still good.
The best way to eat them is to use an empty shell as though it were tweezers or tongs. Hold the shell of the mussel your're going to eat in one hand, and with the empty shell grab the mussel and pull it out. Eh voila!
Karen Serino is a life and style blogger, sharing fashion, fitness and fun for youthful women in their forties, fifties and beyond.
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Click the picture below to see my interview with the lovely Jonet Wooten from Fabulously Chic Over 50