Contains: Shellfish, dairy, nightshades if you use the ancho powder. Is: Gluten-free, grain free, soy-free, quick and easy.
About shirataki noodles: They are made with Japanese white yams / konjac flour, although there is a brand that makes some of them with soy. I’ve never tried those. These white yam noodles are good for people who want to go keto, or in the case of folk like myself, who really want to cut down on the carb calories but still have something with a noodle happening in their recipe, no matter what they’ve eaten otherwise that day. No carbs. I find regular pasta to feel “heavy”, and while I’ll definitely eat regular pasta (not being celiac or intolerant), many days I simply just feel like eating these. They’re also VERY quick-cooking, and very much gluten-free. Dietary fiber is low -so balance out your daily diet accordingly. There’s really no intrinsic flavor but they can take on flavors.
Obviously, with this recipe, you can sub in other pasta/noodles, but in most cases they’ll need longer to cook – you may want to cook those in a separate pot so you can be ready when the cooked mussels are ready – although that’s not entirely necessary.
And if you want clams, use clams!
Prep Time: 5-10 minutes.
Cook Time: 5 minutes.
Rest Time: Not needed.
Serves: 1 as a complete meal, maybe with some salad nibblings.
Cuisine: Maritime inventive.
Leftovers: Yes but don’t re-heat very long.
Mussels with Shirataki Noodles and Seasonings
- A pound or so of raw mussels, weighed in their shells.
- 1 package (7 ounces / 200 grams) shirataki noodles, preferably in fettuccini shape. SEE ABOVE.
- 2 ounces Fontina or other melting cheese, sliced thin. Or shredded.
- 1/8 or so teaspoon of ancho chili powder.
- 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice.
- 1/8 or so teaspoon oregano.
- Ground pepper and salt to taste.
- Wish I’d added: scallions/green onions, probably just one, chopped. A sprinkle of sesame oil and/or seeds. And, y’know, just a sprinkling of rinsed capers, as well. All this at the very end.
Sort the mussels. Any that are open (beyond an 1/8th or so of an inch, discard). You can remove beards from the shells now, too, if necessary but since these will be served shell-less, I do this at a later step.
Bring a pot of water to boil, eyeballing it to be reasonably confident the mussels can be submerged here.
Toss in all the good mussels. Allow the water to return to a boil. With a large spoon, move the lower mussels around so they all have a chance to open.
When the shells start opening, and the water rises up with foam – you are done. Turn off the burner/hob and remove the pot from that spot. Drain through a colander.
Remove the mussel meat from the shells and reserve this meat, but discard ANY mussels that don’t open up. They’re dead, Jim. (If you don’t move the lowest mussels around during cooking, it is possible some can’t relax their adductor muscles and open up, giving you a false negative – if in doubt return those few to boiling water for another minutes – at that point if they don’t open, give them up.)
It is also at this point when you are removing the mussel meat from their shells, if any of the coarse “beard” material decides to come along, tear it off with your fingers and discard.
This process actually takes a lot more time to describe than to do!
Now, rinse the shirataki noodles, and add them to a pot of water, bringing this to a boil. (If you are using other sorts of pasta, refer to the box instructions).
When those are ready or at least au dente, drain out most of the water, but leave at least a half cup.
Return that water, the noodles, AND the mussels to the pot. Simmer another scant minute. Drain again, and drop the noodles and mussels into a bowl, quickly adding in the cheese, pepper, salt, oregano, ancho chili powder, and lemon juice, and mix thoroughly with a spoon or even your hands. You can also add in some or all of the “Wish I’d Added” ingredients now, too. Allow the heat of the noodles and the mussels to melt that cheese.
Then.. serve. Turned out to be a full course for me.
Recipe made May 15th, 2020. Since I couldn’t find shirataki noodles nearby in Massachusetts (they were in my favorite supermarket back in Connecticut), I started ordering them on line last winter. Some brands store at room temperature (these ones for instance), others state to refrigerate even prior to opening.
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