By In The Kitchen With Stefano Faita

INGREDIENTS

2 pounds mussels
4 to 6 slices bacon, chopped
2 tbsp. butter
2 leeks, sliced, white and light green part only
2 green onions, chopped
2 to 3 garlic cloves, chopped
4 sprigs of thyme
Hot pepper flakes, to taste
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1(12-ounce) bottle of beer, such as ale or lager
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
2 tbsp. chopped chives or Italian parsley
Crusty loaf of bread, for serving
Lemon wedges, for serving

PREPARATION

Scrub mussels if needed, and remove any beards. Discard any mussels with cracked shells and that do not close when tapped. Set aside.

Add bacon to a large skillet or Dutch oven over medium heat. Cook until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Remove some of the bacon fat, if desired. Add butter, leeks, green onions, garlic, thyme sprigs, hot pepper flakes, and salt and pepper. Sauté until softened, about 2 to 3 minutes.

Add beer. Bring to a boil. Let simmer for 1 to 2 minutes. Add mussels. Stir to combine. Cover and cook until mussels open, about 5 minutes. Discard any mussels that do not open.

Finish with chives or parsley. Serve with crusty bread and lemon wedges.

Yield: 4 servings.

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