MUSSELS IN GARLIC
1 tbsp. olive oil
2 cups sliced onion
2 large garlic cloves, crushed
1 cup sliced celery
4 plum tomatoes cut into large cubes (about 2 cups)
½ cup dry white wine, or substitute fish broth
Freshly ground pepper
4 lbs. mussels
¼ cup chopped parsley
½ French baguette
Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Saute the onion, garlic, celery and tomatoes until they start to shrivel but not color, about 5 minutes.
Add the wine and some freshly ground pepper and bring to a boil. Add the mussels and cover the saucepan tightly. Let boil about 3 minutes, shaking the pan several times. The wine will boil up over the mussels and they will open. As soon as they are open, take the pan off the heat. Do not overcook or the mussels will become rubbery.
To serve, lift the mussels out of the pan with a slotted spoon and place in two large soup bowls. Discard any mussels that do not open. Spoon the broth over the mussels. Sprinkle with the parsley and serve with slices of French baguette.
Makes 2 servings.
Note: Mussels today are cleaner than they used to be. Just wash them in cold water before using. Scrape off the beard or thin hairs along the shell. If any mussels are open, tap them gently. Discard any that do not close.
— Linda Gassenheimer