It was only recently that I tried to cook these mussells. I was hesitant at first because the ones available at the Hannaford here in my area have very black and thicker shells that those I was accustomed to back in PI. After trying them, I now want them regularly on our dining table. My kids, as usual, love them. They are being sold by bags worth about $3-$4, weighing around 2 lbs, enough for the boys and I. Satifies my craving, as always.
My father used to cook this frequently because it was relatively cheap in PI, and he always told us not to put additional water, since the soup that comes out of steaming the mussells is loaded with flavor, and he did not want to dilute that. This was in contrast with my late ex-father-in-law, who was so fond of sipping a cup of the soup so he wanted to literally drown the mussells.
Based on some recipes I have seen in other's foodblogs, I added some sherry. And while my father used to add pepper leaves (dahon ng sili), I used baby spinach.
1 bag mussells, washed and drained well with cold water
2 tbsp oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
thumb-size ginger, sliced
1 small onion, sliced
1/2 cup sherry
ground pepper to taste
salt to taste (if at all needed)
some dash of chopped dried basil
2 cups of baby spinach
1. Heat oil in medium high.
2. Sautee garlic and ginger for about 30 seconds, followed by onions. Sautee until onions are translucent.
3. Add the mussells and stir.
4. Pour the sherry. Cover and lower the heat to #4. Let simmer for 5 minutes.
5. Add pepper, basil and salt (if needed) to taste. (Optional: Add 1/2 cup water if you want to have more soup, and return to boil.)
6. Add spinach. Turn off heat and stir until spinach wilts. Serve right away with plain rice.
"Kusina" = Kitchen; "Manang" = older sister
A Filipina's unabashed chronicle of her adaptations in the American kitchen. Includes step-by-step photos on how to make pan de sal, ensaymada, pan de coco, siopao, hopia, pandelimon, pianono, atsara, crema de fruta,etc., and if you are lucky, you will find videos too!