cooking experiments - Episode 1

i mentioned planning to do something similar to sacha's CookOrDie sessions some time back, and since i couldn't wait to categorise my entire blog up to put this in, i just decided to post and hope that i manage to do the categorisation someday.

Episode 1: Baked Mussels (October 30, 2005)
i remember seeing this done a dozen of times already, be it homemade (my mom did this before) and outdoors (Dencio's comes to mind), so i figured, heck, this shouldn't be all that hard.

to prevent killing myself with salmonella, i decided against grilling them straight. that plus the fact that i realised too late that the entire batch of mussels my mom bought that morning were boiled in classic broth fashion (nooooo!) for lunch. oh well. i figured it would make for cleaner mussels anyway (since they usually have some grit inside them). so i decided to just prep whatever mussels that would be left over from lunch.

30 minutes before dinner time, i shuffled over to the kitchen and assembled my ingredients:

- 3 tsps. garlic margarine
- 2 tsps. butter
- 2 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
- 5 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 30+ mussels (in shells), boiled
- 2 cups cheese, grated (i used old Quezo de Bola shavings)
- microwave oven
- small oven toaster
- small brush, knife and tongs
- ground pepper (i used a pepper mill)

1. combine margarine, butter and coarsely chopped garlic in a small bowl and microwave for 45 seconds on medium high or until fully melted.
2. preheat oven toaster (there's no temperature setting on mine - just heat it up as per instructions, which is one minute on mine).
3. extract mussels from broth and discard shell (the half where the mussel doesn't stick). use a knife to cut the mussel loose from the shell. clean any excess grit that is visible.
4. brush mussels with garlic-butter mix until coated.
5. add a small amount of finely chopped garlic on top of each mussel.
6. put a generous amount of cheese on each mussel, making sure to cover the mussel and shell.
7. arrange on the metal plate that comes with the toaster (if yours doesn't come with one, just use any other plate that would fit), and heat for 45 seconds or until the cheese starts to bubble.
8. take out mussels, arrange on a plate, and lightly top with pepper.

obviously 30 mussels isn't something i could manage to gobble down on my own, so i shared it with everyone else at home. i think it was pretty good - would have been better if i had some cheddar or quickmelt cheese to use though.

if anyone else has tried a similar recipe, do let me know. i'd love to finetune my cooking skills (even if they are half-assed at best. heheh.)

[edit: thanks for spotting the typo claire!]

1 comment:

cstiu said...

Must've took you some time to edit your entry, because you just missed out something: You've got doubled step#2s in your entry :) If you want something easy, why dont you try my experimental ham and corn porridge or homemade hummus. They're easy to make... and you can be liberally creative, too. I just wished I was more detailed with my instructions, after seeing yours. Wish I had a taste of your baked mussels (I think queso de bola shavings are better :) ) Good luck!