Then something freaky happened. They liked them. No, scratch that, they loved them. They each ate them as quickly as I could take them from their shells and put them on their plate. After a bit they cut out the middle man and started eating them from the shell on their own. A hit, I tell you. Which is good and bad. Bad because they ate up a giant portion of the mussels I had planned to devour, and good because now I can make them whenever I wish with the full support of the tiny dictators.
Mussels that Don't Taste Like Zoo
(serves two adults as a meal, or 4 people as a starter)
2 lbs fresh mussels (in the shell, only live ones, cleaned and de-bearded)
1 large leek, cleaned and chopped into medium sized pieces
3 medium shallots, chopped
3 Tbsp butter
1/2 cup cream sherry
1 cup heavy cream
salt to taste
In a big pot melt your butter. Saute the chopped leeks and shallots until they are soft and taste slightly sweet. Add the sherry and simmer for about a minute. Add the cream and bring the mixture to a boil. Dump in the mussels, cover and let cook until the mussels open. It only takes a few minutes.
Serve in a bowl with a nice portion of the sauce from the pot and a nice hunk of bread to sop it up.
I served it with a simple salad of baby greens tossed with balsamic vinegar, olive oil and kosher salt. You can make the whole dinner in about 15 minutes. And it's fancy enough for dinner guests. Take that time management issues!