Murphy starts by sautéing (in a large pot) 3 large, thinly sliced shallots and 4 cloves of garlic, also thinly sliced, in 1/4 cup of olive oil until lightly golden, about 4 minutes. In goes 1 cup of wine along with S&P. When the liquid is boiling 5 lbs of mussels are tossed in and stirred about for a minute before the pot is tightly covered and the mussels are left to steam for about 6 minutes. Meanwhile make a quick pesto sauce of 2 cups basil leaves, 1/4 cup chopped walnuts (Murphy uses walnuts but I didn't have any on hand so I used toasted pine nuts), 1 clove of garlic, 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese, and 2 TB of olive oil. Murphy adds the sauce along with 4 TB of butter and 1 cup of halved cherry tomatoes to the steamed mussels and stirs until everything is coated with the lovely green sauce. I had softened butter so I just tossed it in the food processor when I made the pesto. The resulting sauce is so summery and delicious I saved the cooking liquid for seafood rice later this week.
Thursday, June 17, 2010
Steamed Mussels with Pesto and Tomatoes
This is such an easy delicious idea I don't know why I didn't think of it on my own. According to Food and Wine magazine as a child chef Marc Murphy of New York's Landmarc, the author of this recipe, ate pesto smothered mussels during summers at his grandmother's house near Nice. And yet, in all my mussel eating years I don't think I have ever been offered a similar treat.