Things were starting to get a wee bit unhealthy around here. I’m looking at you, fried pickles. Anyway, Thomas and I spent the weekend in D.C., where we had a lovely brunch at Brasserie Beck. This is the place to find Belgium’s finest beer selection, as well as an amazing variety of steamed mussels. (Check out this pic that I tweeted of the creepy Belgian monk who made my beer.) I feasted on Thai curry mussels, which were spiked with loads of garlic, crushed red pepper, and crunchy peanuts. These mussels were strong, pun intended. They weren’t messing around. Sweet but spicy, and hearty yet light, they were so tasty that I decided to recreate them at home for a healthy dinner. Enjoy Thai red curry mussels on their own or add some crusty bread or crisp fries (and a Belgian brew) for some extra heft. Let’s just hope the creepy monk stays in his monastery and does what he does best.
Thai Red Curry Mussels with Crushed Peanuts
Besides the curry, the peanuts truly make this recipe, so don’t skimp on them!
2 pounds mussels, cleaned and debearded. Discard any that are broken or won’t shut.Olive oil
1 large shallot, minced
1-1 ½ tablespoons garlic, minced
2 tablespoons Thai red curry paste (I used Thai Kitchen brand)
½ cup chicken stock
1 cup unsweetened lite coconut milk
2 teaspoons soy sauce
1-2 teaspoons crushed red pepper
3 tablespoons crushed peanuts
Squeeze fresh lime juice
Salt (if using unsalted peanuts or low-sodium stock/soy sauce)
In a shallow pot with a lid, sauté the shallot in oil until translucent, and then add the garlic and curry paste. Cook for a few seconds and add the stock. Whisk the curry paste until dissolved. Add coconut milk, soy sauce, crushed red pepper, peanuts, and lime juice. Season with salt accordingly; you may not need any if using salted peanuts and regular stock/soy sauce. Bring to a simmer, dump in the mussels, and cover. Cook for a few minutes until the mussels open. Toss them around in the sauce and sprinkle with cilantro. Serve with bread or fries and enjoy!