Today actually felt like spring, if only for a day. Living by the sea opens up many opportunities to enjoy fresh seafood, such as mussels. Mussels and clams are abundant around here and we love to go clamming in the spring and summer. I couldn’t wait, though – I had to have my first bowl of fresh mussels for the year now! What a great way to have them too! The beer broth is light but spicy. The Spanish chorizo gives richness and some fat to it, which makes this dish ah-mazing!
I absolutely love Spanish chorizo! When we lived in England, we could find loads of great quality options for this cured meat. Now, being back in the states, it’s sort of hit or miss. I can find it at many markets, but it’s not exactly the same quality as what you find overseas.
If you’ve been to Spain, you’ve probably seen this sausage at the markets or restaurants. In fact, there are many different types of Spanish chorizo, ranging from sweet to spicy. Mmmmmm. Despite not being able to predictably find this wonderful meat in the US grocery store, guess where you can get it? That’s right, good ol’ Amazon. Just as a disclaimer, the following links are Amazon affiliate links. What that means is if you click on one of them and make a purchase, I may get a small commission. You will not be charged any more by using the link, but you will be helping me to maintain the enormous cost of running this blog. Thank you in advance!
So here we go:
Have I mentioned that I love Amazon? Hmmm, maybe once or twice.
I used fresh mussels in this recipe, but if all you can get are frozen mussels, it’ll be just fine.
Now, the beer that you choose will determine the flavor of the broth, so choose wisely. For instance, I don’t think I’d recommend an IPA, but you never know, it might be seriously good. My preference is to use a lighter beer, but not a “light” beer. Does that make sense? I see a Belgium blonde used in a number of beer broth recipes. I couldn’t find one though. It seems the IPA craze has taken over my local store! I would be comfortable using amber ale in this beer broth recipe, but I chose a German Pilsner this time around.
Once you de-beard your mussels (here’s a how-to), this recipe goes fast. It’s so perfect to have as a weeknight, elegant meal. It’s light, it’s low-carb, and it’s flavorful. Speaking of low-carb, if you don’t care, get yourself a fresh baguette and use it to dip into the broth. Don’t waste that beautiful, flavorful broth! All I can picture at this point is Homer drooling!
By the way, I just bought a new camera. I am sooooo excited! Her name is Cammy. She is the one responsible for the pictures in this post. I think she did a pretty good job, don’t you? It was her very first job. My older camera, Sammy, will now be used for landscapes, birds, and other outdoor photography because that’s what he does best. Don’t worry, Sammy, you are still loved! 🙂
Check out the post for Crispy Fried Leek Shoestrings for Garnish if you want to make this dish super cute!
I really hope you enjoy this recipe!
If you make this dish, I want to see! Tag your pic with #basilandoregano on Instagram. Also, don’t forget to leave a comment and rating below. Thanks!
- 2 pounds mussels
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 12 ounces of beer, blonde or pilsner
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 7 ounces Spanish chorizo, sliced
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 3 tablespoons shallots, chopped
- ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- Pinch of sea salt
- Discard any mussels that won’t close on their own. Clean and de-beard mussels, if needed.
- In a heavy pan with a lid, sauté shallots for about a minute or two.
- Add in garlic and stir just until garlic becomes aromatic and then add the beer, chorizo, butter, red pepper flakes, and salt. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Taste broth and add more pepper flakes, if desired.
- Add in mussels. Cover for 5 minutes. Baste mussels with broth. Continue to cook mussels until most of them are fully open. Serve immediately. Garnish with fried leeks, if desired.