If you’re a lover of fresh seafood, then you’re not alone.
One of the most loved seafoods are musselsIt’s yummy and has this chewy texture that keeps you wanting for moreHowever, if you’re not located in a place where there’s access for freshwater shellfish, it can be devastating to handle.
Fortunately, a lot of groceries are already selling frozen seafoods, if you can’t access the bountiful seas. They are frozen for a limited time and still remain as yummy as ever. Here, we’ll show you how you can cook frozen mussels at home.
Cooking Frozen Mussels
Any frozen goods involve a good amount of prepping since they are still at its frozen state. That includes our all-time favorite, mussels. Make sure that you follow proper guidelines on preparing frozen mussels before cooking. Take note that you can’t cook them directly while it’s still frozen.
Prepping the Frozen Mussels
Step 1 Let the Mussel Thaw
- When you take it out from the fridge, make sure you put it in a large bowl with drainer and run cold water in it to thaw. Let it thaw for at least 15 to 30 minutes or until the mussels are completely defrosted.
- Never run a hot or warm water in it or the mussel’s meat will slowly cook and affect its taste.
- Also, do not thaw it in a microwave oven since it still has its shell on it. It’s best to thaw it using cold running water.
Step 2 Clean the Mussels
- Once the mussels have perfectly thawed, start washing each of them over cold running water. Make sure you get rid of any seaweed residues, rock or sand and any beard that grows on its shell.
- Take a look at the shells if there’s anything growing near the opening. You would easily see that it’s not the meat but a fibrous-like skin that you’re not supposed to eat. Just cut those with kitchen scissors and wash the shells again until clean.
Step 3 Start Cooking the Mussels
Here’s a perfect recipe for mussels that you should try at home! This recipe is definitely simple and easy that any beginner cooks can follow. Just go through the ingredients and instructions that we’ll present to you down below.
“Homemade Spicy Mussel Risotto Recipe”
Prepping and cooking time can take up to 1 hour. Serves 4-5 persons.
You can serve it for casual dinner gatherings or just an intimate family dinner meal.
- 1 kg of thawed mussels
- 5 tbsps. of canola oil
- 3 garlic cloves cut in half
- 1 cup of minced onion
- 3 tbsps. of minced parsley
- 1 dried hot pepper (jalapeno or habanero)
- 5 cup of diced fresh tomatoes
- 5 tsp of salt and pepper
- 1 cup of white wine (any kind)
- 2 cups Italian rice or any rice available
- 1 liter of vegetable broth
- Wash the thawed mussels thoroughly over cold running water, getting rid of any sea debris such as: weeds, sand or little rocks and fibers. If necessary, brush the shell until it’s clean and shiny to touch. Then, set aside for later.
- In a deep skillet, heat up some canola oil over medium-high heat. Start sautéing the garlic cloves and parsley until the garlic turns to light golden brown.
- Once it’s slightly brown, add in the diced tomatoes and season with salt. Keep sautéing until the tomatoes are a bit soft. Then, add in the hot peppers and let the mixture simmer for about 2-3 minutes.
- After letting the tomatoes simmer, add in your mussels together with the white wine. Mix it fast until it’s well incorporated and let it simmer for another 2 minutes. Check the mussels if there are some that did not open its shells. Discard the unopened shells and keep the opened ones.
- Remove the skillet from the stove and separate the garlic cloves, parsley and hot peppers. Leaving the tomatoes and mussels alone.
- Separate the mussels into 2 parts, set aside the first part and the second part you will need to take out its shells. Make sure before you do this process, the mussels have enough time to cool down. Then set aside.
- In a large pot, heat some canola oil over medium-high heat. Then, saute the onions until translucent and add in the Italian rice and continue sauteeing it for about 3 minutes.
- Add the tomato sauce into the mixture and let it simmer for another 3 minutes. Once it simmers, add the broth and mix well with the rice mixture. Cook the rice for about 20 minutes with occasional stirring to ensure that all the broth are equally distributed.
- Once the rice is perfectly cooked, take it out from the stove. Then take the mussels, both with shells and without shells and with the rice. Top with chopped parsley for presentation and enjoy!
Important Things to consider
- When purchasing any frozen goods, always check or monitor the expiration date. If it has already passed its expiration date, throw the food right away. Just because it doesn’t look or smell bad, it’s safe to eat. Once it expires, it’s not safe to eat.
- When thawing frozen goods like frozen mussels, it’s important that you cook and consume it immediately. Thawing and freezing it back again will affect the quality and safety of the food. Change of temperatures could cause food contamination that could pose health risks. It’s better safe than sorry.