Breaded Mussels


On our recent trip to Puglia, we ate these delicious mussels on a daily basis. Pugliese are passionate about mussels, preparing them in a variety of ways, but this dish was perhaps my favorite. Buy only very fresh mussels, and the larger ones are better for this dish. To prepare the mussels, rinse them thoroughly under water, and scrub the shells, removing the beards. Discard any mussels with broken shells. I found that I could prepare this dish hours before serving which makes it perfect for entertaining.

Buon Appetito!
Deborah Mele 2011

Breaded Mussels

An easy seafood appetizer that would be great for entertaining.

Ingredients:

  • 2 Pounds Large Mussels, Cleaned
  • 1/4 Cup Dry White Wine
  • 2 Tablespoons Finely Minced Garlic
  • 3 Tablespoons Finely Minced Pancetta
  • 3 Tablespoons Finely Chopped Parsley
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Dried Oregano
  • 1/2 Cup Fresh Bread Crumbs
  • 1/4 Cup Olive Oil

To Serve:

  • Lemon Wedges

Directions:

  1. In a heavy saucepan, heat the wine, then add the mussels, cover, and bring to a boil.
  2. Cook just until the mussels open, then remove them to a bowl with a slotted spoon.
  3. Strain the wine and liquid released by the mussels through a fine sieve and cook until it is reduced to 1/4 cup.
  4. Remove one half of the mussel shell and release the meat from the other half shell.
  5. Line a baking pan with foil and place the half mussel shells with the mussels on top of each.
  6. In a frying pan, heat half the olive oil with the pancetta and cook until it is light brown, add the garlic and stir.
  7. Add the bread crumbs and seasonings and cook over medium heat a minute or two just until the mixture just begins to brown.
  8. Remove from the heat.
  9. Preheat the broiler to high.
  10. Using a spoon, cover the mussels with the bread mixture pressing it down lightly to shape it around the mussel meat.
  11. Drizzle the mussels with the remaining olive oil as well as the strained wine mixture.
  12. Place the mussels under the broiler and cook just until the crumb mixture turns light brown.
  13. Serve immediately with lemon wedges.