The rich flavour of Irish stout gives this simple dish of steamed mussels plenty of depth. A spicy kick from a generous amount of freshly ground black pepper balances everything nicely. Mussels are a great choice when having a crowd over, because it takes only minutes to steam a large amount. About ½ pound (225g) per person is a good size for an appetizer, or you can serve 1 pound (454g) per person with a side of french fries for a main course. Have some Irish soda bread on hand for sopping up the delicious broth left in the bowl.
Courtesy of Derek Bocking.
Rinse the mussels in cold water and then remove any hanging threads (the “beards”) using scissors or a quick tug. If any mussels are open, tap them with a spoon and if they don’t immediately close, discard them.
Melt the butter in a large pot on medium-high heat and then add the onions. Sweat the onions until they are translucent and then add the beer & black pepper. Add the mussels to the pot, cover and cook on medium heat, stirring occasionally. They are ready when all the mussels are open, about 5 to 8 minutes.
Serve with bread and french fries.