The mussels and the wine are a perfect combination. The dish is buttery, creamy, and transports us to a French bistro without leaving home. The flavors are impressive but the recipe is simple and doesn’t require stellar cooking skills. All you need is garlic, shallots, wine, parsley, and creme fraiche. Creme fraiche is France’s version of clotted cream. It’s very low-carb, silky, and can stand up to a simmer without curdling. A little goes a long way because it’s rich. If you can’t find it, use heavy cream. But if you can find it — please use it. You might never use heavy cream in sauces again. Served with a baguette for dipping, or eat the mussels and sip the broth if you’re skipping the bread.
1/2 tablespoon unsalted butter
1/2 tablespoon olive oil
2 small shallots, finely chopped
1/4 tsp white pepper, optional
3-4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1/4 cup + 1 tbs chopped Italian leaf parsley
3/4 cup Buttercream Chardonnay
1 tbs creme fraiche
2 pounds mussels, cleaned
- In a skillet with a tight-fitting lid, melt butter and warm oil over medium-low heat.
- Add shallots and pepper, season with kosher salt, and cook covered until translucent, 5 minutes.
- Add garlic and 3/4 of the parsley. Cook 2 minutes or until fragrant.
- Add wine and creme fraiche. Stir until creme dissolves.
- Turn up the heat and bring to a low simmer. Add mussels, cover, and cook for 3-6 minutes or until open.
- Once mussels are open, transfer to a plate.
- Allow the sauce to simmer, uncovered until reduced by 1/3. Return mussels to skillet and warm through. Serve with french bread and wine for sipping.
- Check mussels occasionally and remove immediately upon opening so they’re plump. Discard any unopened mussels. Cracked or broken mussels should be discarded instead of cooked.