Monday, October 10
Moules Pommes Frites
I really, really love going out to eat.
Recently I was talking with some other women, and a couple said that they don't go out, they'd rather cook at home, and save the money. I laughed to myself. I love to cook too! But lets be honest, sometimes, it's so much easier and more fun to have someone do it for you. Plus, going out to eat is where I gain most of my inspiration from these days.
Thanks to a couple of great local restaurants in and around Manchester, and the occasional trip to Boston, I have broken out of my rut of making tacos for dinner 7 nights a week. Sure, going out is often costly, but I am a firm believer in work hard, play hard. My hobby is food, so I spend my time and money on food related things!
On one of our recent outings to our favorite local seafood spot, we ordered Moules Pommes Frites to start our meal off. It was a huge serving of french fries, topped with buttery mussels and a cajun aioli. They were amazing! Normally I am not a huge fan of mussels, but after eating them in a chowder while visiting Prince Edward Island, then ordering the Moules Pommes Frites at Hooked.... I am in love with them.
One night, when I had no babysitter I decided to do an in home date night and whip up my new favorite mussel dish.
Potato Wedges Roasted in olive oil, thyme and garlic, topped with a white wine butter sauce, mussels, and a spicy lemon aioli. Perfect to serve as a side dish, appetizer, or a main course!
Moules Pommes Frites
1 lb of fresh New England or PEI mussels
2 large russet potatoes
2 tbs olive oil
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp fresh thyme
2 1/2 tbs minced garlic
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup mayonnaise ( I used homemade)
the zest of half a lemon
1 tsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp Louisiana hot sauce
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Scrub potatoes under hot water, and remove all dirt. Dry with a cloth, and cut into wedges. Start by cutting them in half the long way, then in quarters, then in eighths. In a bowl, toss potatoes with olive oil, salt, thyme and 1 tbs minced garlic.
Spread the potatoes on a lined baking sheet, peel side down, with the points of the potato wedges pointing up. Roast for about 15-20 minutes, or until golden brown and fork soft.
Rinse raw mussels under cold water, carefully inspecting them all. Discard any broken or open shells. If a mussel is open, tap it with your finger, if it closes, it is still alive and ok to cook. But if it stays open, it is no good.
In a large saute pan, add raw mussels, white wine, and 1/2 tbs garlic, saute for about 5-7 minutes over medium-high heat, until all of the shells have opened, exposing the mussels inside. If any shells do not open, discard.
Melt 1/2 cup butter with 1 tbs butter, a pinch of salt and 1 tbs of the white wine from the saute pan.
Remove the mussels from the shells, and add to the melted butter. Evenly coat the shucked mussels with butter and drizzle over plated potato wedges.
In a small bowl combine mayonnaise, lemon zest, lemon juice and hot sauce.
Drizzle the spicy aioli over the top of plated potatoes and mussels.
Serve with lemon wedges and fresh thyme sprigs for garnish.