Like so many cooks, we learned key fundamental cooking techniques—like how to steam mussels-- from Jacques Pepin’s books and television shows. While we may vary the flavorful broth ingredients, we rely on his simple no-fail method to result in tender, flavorful mussels every time.
- 2 tablespoons canola oil
- 1 large shallot, about 1/2 cup
- 1 medium red bell pepper, cut into 1 1/2-inch x 1/4-inch thick slices
- 2 red Fresno chilies, sliced crosswise into thin circles
- 5 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
- 4 teaspoons dark brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon fish sauce
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 (14.5-ounce) can unsweetened coconut milk
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 4 pounds mussels, scrubbed and de-bearded
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro, chopped
- Crusty bread, for serving
- Heat the oil in an Anolon® Vesta Cast Iron 5-Quart Dutch Oven over medium. Add the shallot, bell pepper and Fresno chilies and cook, stirring occasionally, until slightly softened, about 3-4 minutes. Stir in the garlic and ginger and cook until fragrant, stirring, about 1 minute. Add the brown sugar, fish sauce and salt; cook, stirring, until sugar dissolves, about 30 seconds. Add the coconut milk and lime juice, bring to a simmer and cook 2 minutes. Add the mussels, cover, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the mussels have opened, about 6-8 minutes. Discard any mussels that haven’t opened. Stir in the cilantro.
- Divide the mussels and broth among 4 bowls and serve with crusty bread.