This flavourful recipe for steamed mussels in Portuguese-style garlic cream sauce will have everyone asking for more.
We ordered 8 pounds of large, plump, locally sourced Saltspring Island Mussels for this quick, delicious Portuguese dish.
Clams or a combination of clams and mussels would be just as mouthwatering prepared this way.
Serve with fresh Portuguese rolls or French bread for soaking up the tasty sauce.
We had enough leftovers for another dinner for two the next day.
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Where to buy fresh mussels in Vancouver
The Lobster Man on Granville Island in Vancouver has some of the freshest seafood in the Lower Mainland.
We ordered our mussels online for pickup the next day. There is an option to have these delivered for a fee, if the total order is under $100. Orders over $100 are delivered free.
The Granville Island seafood store sells locally sourced west coast Saltspring Island variety, also known as Gallo Mussels or Mediterranean Mussels.
They are priced at about $14.20 for 2 lbs., dependent on current market conditions.
The Saltspring variety are larger and sweeter than others harvested on the East Coast.
We prepared ours by steaming them in a savory Portuguese Garlic Cream Sauce.
See recipe below.
Saltspring Island Mussels
Mussels are grown by the small, local operation Island Sea Farms on Saltspring Island.
Island Sea Farms is dedicated to providing sustainable seafood. The operation began the first successful mussel farm in BC in 1996.
The farm grows a variety of different Mytilus mussels year-round, including Atlantic Blue or PEI Mussels, in the cool, clean BC coastal waters.
Their website says, “Island Sea Farms is the only dedicated commercial mussel hatchery in the world.”
They are Vancouver Aquarium “Ocean Wise” certified and are endorsed by a number of prominent environmental groups.
Health benefits of eating mussels
Mussels are low in calories, a good source of protein and are filled with a healthy dose of essential vitamins and minerals.
It may surprise you to know that they have as much iron and folic acid as a variety of red meats.
They also provide important Omega-3 fatty acids, zinc, Vitamin A and B12 beneficial to the immune system, brain and heart health.
Mussel Recipe – Quick and Easy Steamed Mussels in Portuguese Garlic Cream Sauce
Steamed Mussels in Portuguese Garlic Cream Sauce
- 8 Pounds Fresh Mussels, washed and scrubbed
- 8 Tbsp Butter
- 8 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 1 Cup Shallots, chopped
- 12 Tbsp Fresh Garlic, coarsely chopped
- 4 Tbsp Dried Crushed Hot Chili Peppers
- 8 Large Fresh Tomatoes, diced
- 4 Lemons, juiced
- 4 Tbsp Fresh Thyme chopped
- 8 Tbsp Fresh Parsley chopped
- 2 Cups White Wine (Chardonnay)
- 4 8 oz Bottles of Clam Juice
- 1 Cup Heavy Cream
- First wash and clean mussels under cold running water. Place in fridge until ready to use.
- Use two large stock pots.
- Divide all ingredients in half to process in the two big pots.
- Place butter and oil in pots to melt over medium heat.
- Saute shallots.
- Add all the rest of the ingredients except lemon juice, wine, clam juice and cream.
- Cook about 5 minutes.
- Stir in lemon juice and white wine. Reduce liquids by half.
- Add clam juice, boil and simmer for 5 minutes, then increase to medium high heat.
- Add mussels and cook covered until mussels open. About 5 minutes.
- Remove mussels with a slotted spoon to a serving dish. Important – discard any unopened mussels.
- Add cream to remaining liquid in pot and cook for about two minutes.
- Pour sauce over mussels in serving dish and sprinkle with parsley.
- Serve with fresh Portuguese rolls or French bread for soaking up the delicious sauce.
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