The large succulent mussels that live around New Zealand’s shores are truly delicious. Steaming the New Zealand mussels in white wine and garlic is certainly one of the best ways to prepare them.
Frozen New Zealand mussels are available here in Saigon. So if they are available here, there is a good chance you can find them too.
I have grown up eating this species of mussel (green-lipped). As a result I was quite surprised to learn that mussels in many other parts of the world are small and not nearly as succulent as the New Zealand variety. Not only are they delicious, they are high in Omega 3 fatty acids and have anti-inflammatory effects. You can now get extract of NZ mussels in capsules to combat arthritis!
Mussels come in two colors. The male mussels are a creamy white colour, while the females are apricot orange. I have always preferred the orange ones. Maybe others do too because they were a little rare in the last batch I purchased.
Needless to say, NZ mussels are a favourite and there are a few other mussel recipes here to take a look at. I highly recommend you take a look at this recipe for mussels steamed in sake and miso. It was particularly good.
Make sure you use a good white wine. Something with a bit of body works well, like a dry riesling or chardonnay. Remember, if you wouldn’t drink it out of a glass, don’t use it in cooking.
Serve these mussels with some bread to soak up the delicious creamy soup. In the photograph above is my first attempt at making a whole wheat bread. It was sufficiently successful to start me on my bread making journey!
NZ Mussels steamed in wine and garlic
- 1 kg mussels I used New Zealand frozen mussels
- 20 g butter
- 6 cloves garlic finely diced
- 1 small onion finely diced
- 200 ml white wine a good dry white. I recommend a chardonnay or reisling.
- 1/4 cup finely chopped parsley
- 150 ml cooking cream
- 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 1 Tbsp fish sauce or 1 tsp salt
- Defrost the mussels in the refrigerator 12 hours before cooking time
- If using fresh mussels, scrub well, and remove the “beard” if you can.
- In a large saucepan, saute the onion and garlic in the butter until translucent
- Add the 200ml of white wine and the fish sauce (or salt)
- Add the mussels and cover to steam for 10 minutes
- Remove the mussels and set aside
- If using fresh mussels, and they haven't opened, please discard.
- Bring the cooking liquid to a boil and add the cream and half the parsley. Maintain a vigorous simmer until reduced by half.
- Strain the cooking juices into another pan and add the other half of the parsley. Simmer for a few minutes while arranging the mussels in a bowl.
- Pour the sauce over the mussels.