I can’t think of any dish that feels more comforting to me than a big ‘ole bowl of steamers. Whether it be clams or mussels, my enjoyment level that comes from a big bowl of steamers placed in front of me at the table is mountainous. Living on both coasts of the U.S. has made a seafood lover out of me. And with that seafood love comes my deep affection for these lovely shellfish.
I remember my first encounter with mussels. Living on the East coast years ago, we frequented a little seafood restaurant in Newport, Rhode Island called The Black Pearl. There, I dined on the most succulent of mussels bathed in white wine, garlic and fresh herbs. From that moment, I became a huge fan of steamed shellfish whether they be bathed in wine, beer, broth, with chorizo or homemade sausage, fresh herbs, onions and garlic… no matter, I’ll eat them.
To mix it up a bit I thought why not steam these little lovelies in curry? And just as I was toying with the thought, Ranger Craig and I dined at a fabulous restaurant in Bend, Oregon which served Steamed Mussels in Thai Curry. This absolutely proves the point – if it’s a good idea, someone, somewhere, has already thought of it.
So now I’m passing along this dish to you. Whether it be spring, summer, fall or winter, this dish seems to compliment any season. Be sure to serve with a bowl of rice to add to the curry when you’ve polished off the mussels. Or crusty garlic crostini to dip into the curry is also quite divine.
Delicious Wishes and Loads of Love,
Thai Green Curry Steamed Mussels
Just a quick note. When I purchase fresh mussels at my market or fish market they are bagged and tied. When you get home, untie the bag, place the open bag of mussels in a bowl and set the bowl in your refrigerator. It’s best to use the mussels the same day they are purchased, however, they are fine if used the very next day.
Serves 2 for an entrée or 4 for a starter
2lbs fresh mussels, scrubbed and rinsed in cold water and little “beards”s pinched off. Don’t add any mussels that are open or broken. If you squeeze the mussel shut and it opens again, it’s not any good. It’s rare I can find the smaller mussels, but if you find them, snag them. They are sweeter and less briny than the larger mussels.
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons green curry paste (I used Thai Kitchen Green Curry Paste)
1 can organic coconut milk (don’t use the “light” coconut milk)
2-3 lime leaves (now easily found in the fresh herb section of most markets)
1 stalk lemongrass, split lengthwise (also found in the herb section of most markets)
1 teaspoon Asian fish sauce
1-2 cloves garlic, smashed
1 inch piece of fresh ginger, sliced
1/2 small red hot pepper or 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (if you don’t like spicy food omit the pepper)
Squeeze of fresh lime
Garnish with chopped fresh cilantro or sliced green onions
In a large pasta or soup pot (you can also use a large skillet but I prefer a large pot), heat the olive oil over medium heat and add the green curry paste. Let the paste warm and mix with the oil for about 30 seconds or so.
Then add the coconut milk, lime leaves, lemongrass, Asian fish sauce, smashed garlic, fresh ginger slices and red pepper if using. Stir to combine and simmer on medium to medium low for about 5-8 minutes, stirring occasionally. The coconut milk will thicken a bit.
Turn the heat up to medium high and add the mussels. Cover with a tight lid and let them cook for a few minutes, or until all the mussels are open and opaque.
Give them a toss in the curry and then pour into a large serving bowl. Garnish with lots of fresh chopped cilantro or green onion.
Serve with rice to eat with the curry when all the mussels are gone. Or some toasty garlic bread for dipping.
Recipe inspired by my Thai Green Curry Steamers in Bend, Oregon