The mussels weren't much work at all, mostly just chopping the onion, fennel, garlic, and herbs, and they really only took a couple of minutes to cook. I actually made some pasta as well, to help soak up the sauce in addition to the bread. I will post the bread recipe separately.
Mussels in Garlic Fennel Cream
Adapted from Cook at Home by Anna & Michael Olson
Yield: 2 servings
1 tbsp + 1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 cup onion, chopped
1/2 cup fennel, chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
2 sprigs fresh tarragon (I used basil and parsley instead)
1/2 cup white wine
1/2 cup whipping cream
juice of half a lemon
coarse salt and ground black pepper, to taste
- To purchase mussels, select ones that are alive, that is, with a closed shell. The smell should be appealing and the shell should be intact.
- To clean mussels, remove the "beard" and rinse 2 or 3 times in cold water, tossing with your hands until the water runs clear.
- To store mussels before serving, place them in a colander on a plate in the fridge and cover with a damp tea towel.
- Heat a large soup pot over medium heat and add 1 tablespoon of olive oil.
- Add onion and fennel and saute for 3 minutes.
- Add garlic and tarragon (or other herbs) and cook for 1 minute.
- Add the mussels and stir to coat.
- Pour in white wine and bring up to a simmer.
- Add cream. Cover the pot and cook until all mussels have opened, shaking pot occasionally, about 3 minutes.
- Spoon mussels into a serving bowl.
- Boil the cooking liquid until reduced to desired consistency.
- Drizzle 1 tablespoon of olive oil and the lemon juice into the liquid and season with salt and pepper.
- Pour cream and vegetables over the mussels.
- Serve with crusty bread or pasta.