Steamed Mussels with Tequila

When you’re looking for a first-class starter but don’t have a lot of time to devote to it, mussels make a great choice. They cook in no time flat and take to many types of preparations. Here we’re inspired by the quintessential mussel dish, French moules marnière, and in a nod to Ja’Nel Witt’s celebrity-chef praised opening to the Season 11 finale, give it an Asian twist with the addition of coconut milk, fish sauce, and lime juice. Tequila takes the place of the traditional white wine. Serve with plenty of toasted bread for dunking up the sauces at the bottom of the bowl. See below for tips on choosing and storing mussels.

Steamed Mussels with Tequila, Red Chili, Green Jalapeño, Coconut Milk, Lime, and Cilantro
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  1. 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  2. 2 large shallots, thinly sliced
  3. 5 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  4. 2 red serrano chili peppers, deseeded and sliced
  5. 1 small jalapeño, deseeded and minced
  6. ¼ cup tequila
  7. 3 cups coconut milk (not lite!)
  8. 1 teaspoon fish sauce
  9. 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  10. 2 pounds mussels, scrubbed and debearded
  11. 3 tablespoons chopped cilantro, divided
  12. Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  1. Heat vegetable oil in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat.
  2. Add the shallots and garlic and sauté 2–3 minutes.
  3. Add the serrano and jalapeño chilies, tequila, coconut milk, fish sauce, and lime juice and simmer 2–3 minutes.
  4. Add mussels.
  5. Cover and steam until mussels begin to open, about 2 minutes, discarding any mussels that do not open.
  6. Using tongs, transfer mussels to large bowl.
  7. Simmer sauce uncovered until slightly reduced, 2–3 more minutes.
  8. Add 2 tablespoons cilantro and season with salt and pepper.
  9. Pour the sauce over the mussels, garnish with more chopped cilantro, and serve.
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