Wednesday, August 4, 2010

mmmm is for Mussels

The first time I had mussels was during a food crawl in NYC with my bestest Jacqui.  We were in this downstairs vodka bar and ordered the sweet mollusks in a light white wine sauce with the crispiest french fries on the side.  The beverage of choice was one of the best bloody Mary's I've ever had ... and trust me I've had my fair share of bloodies.
Since then I've tried to order this dish as much as I can.  I finally realized this past Saturday night that I could make mussels myself in the comfort of my own home.  After going to 2 different supermarkets I finally bought a 1 pound of what I hoped was fresh mussels.
I used one of my favorite websites, Epicurious, to find the perfect recipe.

Mussels alla Diavola 
adapted from Epicurious

5 cloves of garlic, minced
1/4 cup of olive oil
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
10.75 oz can of tomato puree
1 tbsp tomato paste
1/6 cup red wine
1/4 cup Kalamata black olives, pitted and chopped
1 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp dried basil
1/2 lb dried whole wheat angel hair pasta
1 lb mussels, cleaned

clean mussels

all of the ingredients

simmering the ingredients

finished dish with a side of garlic bread
  • Cook garlic and red pepper flakes in oil in a skillet over moderate heat, stirring, until fragrant but not browned, about 2 minutes. Add tomato purée, tomato paste, herbs, olives, and wine and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally until sauce is thick, about 15 minutes.
  • Cook angel hair in a pot of boiling water until al dente, then drain in a colander.
  • While pasta cooks, increase heat under sauce to moderately high and add mussels, then cook, covered, until mussels just open wide, checking frequently after 3 minutes and transferring to a bowl. (Discard any mussels that remain unopened after 6 minutes.)
  • Serve angel hair with mussels and sauce.

The verdict?  Delicious!  The pasta dish was so very spicy ... just the way Ryan likes it.  


  1. haha you mean just the way Jess likes it...

  2. maybe ... maybe not :) gotta please the husband I guess. something I'll hopefully get used to :)