Mussel Tacos

I guess it is a little bit gratuitous to remove mussels from their shells for a recipe. I mean, they taste amazing in the shell and it is sort of a fun game to eat them, and on top of that the broth with a nice crusty piece of bread can be nectar of the gods when done right. While it was fun to try this recipe, I probably won't be taking mussels out of their shells for a recipe again. These tacos were really great, don't get me wrong, but it is just a lot of pointless added effort when I would be happy to just crack a beer and go to town on a pile of mussels. If you made these on a smaller scale as mini taco apps I think it would be more worth the effort.
The cooking liquid is fresh squeezed orange juice and banana pepper juice. Brown some onions and add in cumin, coriander, and garlic. Add in the liquid and then the mussels. The mussels only need a few minutes to open up and be fully cooked. Seperate the meat from the shells and be sure to keep all the liquid in the pan or with the mussel meat, and not with the shells. Simmer the juices for about 10 mintues to reduce slightly, then add the meat back in and some banana peppers. Let it come to a simmer for about a minute before finally serving. The slaw was jsut some cabbage and carrots lightly dressed with salt and a splash of the orange/pickle juice. The tone of this post makes it sound like these weren't great but that isn't true at all. These tacos were juicy and flavorful. I used flour tortillas instead of corn so that the excess mussel juice could be absorbed. Tasty tacos, but better than a big bowl of mussels? Not really.
 

Mussel Tacos

For:  2 people
  • 2 Pounds Mussels
  • 2 Tablespoons Butter
  • 1 Small Onion
  • 3 Cloves Garlic
  • 2 Teaspoons Cumin
  • 2 Teaspoons Coriander
  • Pinch Clove
  • Pinch Cinnamon
  • Splash Worcestershire Sauce
  • 1/2 Cup Fresh Squeezed Orange Juice
  • 1/4 Cup Juice from Banana Pepper Jar
  • 15 Banana Pepper Rings
  • Cabbage and Carrot (for Slaw)
  • Flour Tortillas

Instructions

  1. Shred the cabbage and carrot and mix. Salt. Mix the orange juice and bananna pepper juice together and add 1/4 cup of this mixture to the slaw. Set aside in the fridge. Clean all the mussels, slice the onion, dice the garlic, grind the spices if necessary. Melt the butter in a pan and cook the onions until lightly browned, about 15 minutes. Add in the garlic and spices and cook 2 minutes. Add in the remaining half cup of orange/pepper juice and scrape the bottom of the pan to deglaze. Add in the mussels, bring to a simmer, and cover for 3-5 minutes. Uncover and most of the mussels should be opened. if not, cover again for 2 more minutes. Start removing the opened mussels being sure to drain all juices into the pan, discard the shell, and put the meat into a bowl. Repeat with the rest of the opened mussels (more should be opening as you go) and discard any that don't open. Get rid of the shells and let the liquid simmer for about 5 minutes just to reduce slightly and cook the acid out a bit. Add in the banana peppers and return the mussel meat to the pan as well. Simmer 1 minute and serve on the tortillas with the slaw on top.