Ok, so it’s no big story that Mussels and Beer go great together. In fact last September I did a post about mussels and brew at my favorite South Jersey seafood cafe Max’s (click here to read). But maybe you don’t have access to a bar that makes great mussels or just want to eat in. If that is the case here is a simple recipe for Beer and Butter Mussels you can make at home. It’s simple, only requires five ingredients, and basic cooking skills.
Here’s the run down:
The Wookie’s Quick Beer and Butter Mussels
Step 1: Assemble your ingredients
- 2 lbs of Mussels
- 2 12 oz bottles of Sierra Nevada Kellerweis
(or other Wheat Beer – try Hoegaarden, Allagash White, etc)
- 1 stick of salted butter
- 1 link andouille sausage
- 1/2 Granny Smith apple (cored and cut into 1/2 inch cubes)
Step 2: Prep
- Prep and clean the mussels. (If you have never cooked mussels the prep isn’t hard but it would take too long to explain here. Click here for one resource to review or do a quick internet search. Just make sure you know how to clean, store, and select your mussels. It could mean the difference between a good meal and food poisoning.)
- Assemble your tools.
– One lidded pan – deep enough to hold the mussels and liquid and wide enough so the mussels aren’t more than 2 deep in the pan
– One wooden spoon
– One slotted spoon
– One ladle
- Par-Cook and cube the sausage – simply place the sausage in a bowl, cover with water, and microwave for 2-3 minutes until almost cooked. Drain the water and cut the sausage into large 1/2 to 3/4 inch cubes.
Step 3: Cook
Heat your pan over medium heat. When warm, add sausage to the dry pan and cook until it starts to brown (2-3 minutes). Next add the apple. When the apple just begins to brown (1-2 minutes) add the butter and 1 1/2 bottles of beer. Bring the beer and butter to a boil and then lower the heat to a simmer. Allow the sauce to cook for about 5 minutes and scrape any “brown bits” off the bottom of the pan. (While the sauce is simmering drink the remaining half bottle of beer …. Cooking is Fun!) Next add the mussels. The sauce does not need to cover them. Distribute the mussels evenly in the pan. When the sauce comes back to a boil cover and steam the mussels for 3-6 minutes. Begin checking the mussels at 3 minutes. Once the have all opened they are done. Discard any mussels that do not open on their own after cooking for 5 minutes or so.
Step 4: Serve and Eat
Using the slotted spoon transfer the mussels and any sausage and apple bits to a large serving bowl. The slotted spoon will prevent any grit that may be in the sauce from getting in your serving dish. Once you have all mussels in the bowl ladle some, but not all of the sauce over the mussels. Scooping the sauce off the top and leaving a little behind makes sure any grit stays in the pan.
Now pour yourself another one of those Kellerweis, serve the mussels with a loaf of crusty bread and enjoy.
If you give this recipe a try let us know what you think. Cheers! — The Wookie