I miss New York when it comes to sea food. I think that they have the best fish and shellfish! I’d like to visit Tokyo’s famed fish market, Tsujiki, sometime. They boast the freshest and finest fish from anywhere in the world. The Tsujiki fish market is on my list as one of the must-do places to visit. For now, I guess I’ll just have to make do with local markets, like Sun Fat.
Sun Fat is great though I do feel that their focus is more on fish and Dungeness crab compared with other kinds of shellfish. I’m not that thrilled by crab, especially Dungeness, but just adore clams, mussels and squid. These seem better to me on the East Coast. I don’t know why.
Last Saturday we were craving bivalves. Bivalves are tasty! Clams, mussels, scallops, oysters: which is your favorite? I love them all but have a slight preference for clams. Our linguine with clams tastes like heaven! I end up drinking all of the remaining broth every time.
When we go to the fish market we try to keep an open mind. It’s always key to look for the freshest seafood, hopefully at a reasonable price. Last Saturday we hit the mussels jackpot! They were on sale at $3.99 a pound and looked as fresh as they can be. Buried in shaved ice, the shells were tightly closed, shiny, and almost perfectly clean with a fresh ocean scent. I didn’t see so much as a single barnacle attached to any of them and no beards at all. So I bought about two pounds. Then a quick stop for some mangoes at a local Mexican market and with a short jaunt to Whole Foods for some rustic bread and cheese, we had the fixin’s for Shredded Cabbage and Mango Salad followed by New York style mussels with garlic and Chablis wine sauce.
By then it was already around 6PM. Since we’d skipped lunch, we were ravenous. I set to work while Steven walked Clarence. Here’s the recipe:
New York Style Mussels with Garlic and Chablis Sauce
2 lb mussels, cleaned
4 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
1 cup Chablis (or another dry white wine)
1/3 cup chopped parsley
Kosher salt to taste
Freshly ground black pepper
2 tbsp parmesan cheese
3 tbsp olive oil
crushed red pepper to taste
Heat olive oil in a deep pan at high temperature. Add garlic and salt, sauté for a minute without burning. Add mussels and shake pan so they can spread out. Pour Chablis over mussels. Cover pan and let it cook/steam for about a minute or so. Shake the pan periodically so mussels cook evenly. Remove the lid when most of the shells have opened. Remove from heat. Toss parsley, black pepper and crushed red pepper into finished mussels. Sprinkle Parmesan on top. Serve with bread.
Dip bread into the yummy juices directly from the bottom of the pan. Also offer spoons for your guest(s) to sip the broth. To me this interactive dish makes for fun and is the best kind of party!
If you prefer a thicker broth, before adding parsley, remove some of the mussels from their shells. Put these mussels in a separate bowl along with the broth. Blend together with a stick blender. Pour back over mussels with shells. Add parsley, peppers and serve the same way.