Thursday, May 13, 2010
Stress and Mussels
I don't get stressed about too many things but the one thing that will really set me off is clutter.
You know what I'm talking about.
Last night the kidadult from college returned for the summer. I'm not sure but I think he moved sometime during the year from his pint sized dorm room to a 12 room mansion because that's how much stuff he brought back.
And it is multiplying on its own. When I went to bed last night I was somewhat pleased that it only took TBHITW, the college boy and the 16 year old about 15 minutes to unload the SUV (and overhead). I remarked what a simple job that was to which all three of them replied, "oh yeah, there wasn't that much stuff to bring home".
This morning I awoke to a set of hand weights, some dirty laundry, a winter coat, a ski helmet and some socks on my kitchen table. Upon entering the family room I noticed right away (I'm clever like that) that we no longer had a floor - rather just piles and piles of pillows, blankets, book bags, 3 (yes, 3!) 4 foot by 2 foot plastic bins with lids with god knows what inside of them. Two desk lamps, various CD's, a stereo, speakers, a game system that I didn't know we owned and random laundry bags (I only recalled giving him one laundry bag)... I'm not even going to mention his bedroom, I just closed the door on that one.
I am stressed. Clutter stresses me out.
When I get stressed I turn to comfort food (who doesn't?). Mussels are a perfect spring dinner. Add a cold glass of white wine, a crusty loaf of bread, sit back and keep telling yourself he goes back in a just a few short months.....
The Good Cook's Mussel Pot: (serves 2)
2 pounds of the freshest mussels you can find, scrubbed and debearded. If any are open, gently click them together, if they don't close, discard them.
1 shallot, minced
1 cup cup dry white wine (sauvignon blanc or pino grigio work well here)
1 garlic clove, minced
2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
pinch red pepper flakes
Melt the butter in a large dutch oven or skillet (big enough to hold all the mussels with a lid)
Add the shallots and gently saute until soft.
Add the garlic and stir for a minute.
Add the wine, the parsley and the red pepper flakes and bring to a boil.
Add the mussels, stir to coat and bring back to a boil. Cover. Continue to cook until all mussels are open and cooked through - about 6 to 8 minutes. Discard any mussels that didn't open.
Serve in big bowls, ladling some of the broth over the hot mussels. Pass crusty bread for sopping up the broth.
Dream of autumn.