Its spring in Austin and today was one of those chamber-of-commerce type days that defines why we live in our town. The morning air was crisp and without a cloud in the sky the sun warmed us to what we affectionately call California weather. A 75 – 55 split.
We headed out with the girls to Town Lake for a quick jaunt on the hike and bike trail. We could talk of nothing else except how perfect spring is in Austin. After meeting our daily fitness requirement, we immediately treated ourselves to a trip through Whole Foods. Mussels were calling our name and we gathered up a pound or two, some shallots, garlic, fresh bread and salad fixin’s.
Husband and I spent the rest of the day in the yard, clearing, cleaning and planning. Working all day in the earth fresh with the smell of dirt, mulch, flora and fauna our appetites were whetted for a taste of the sea. Gratefully, mussels are quick and easy.
To make a steaming pot of mussels I first sautéed two shallots and two cloves of garlic in a bit of EVOO. When the shallots were soft, I added two cups of good white wine and let the mixture come to a boil. Gently I dropped in the mussels and covered over medium heat for about 6 minutes. When the mussels were done, I removed them to a big white bowl and quickly whisked in two tablespoons of butter to the simmering sauce. I topped it off with salt, pepper and a little chopped tarragon. The presentation of mussels is always so glam. I love a dish that looks and tastes so good, but really requires minimal effort. Paired with a simple mixed baby greens salad and yummy ciabatta bread for mopping up the delicious wine sauce, the mussels were just what our tired muscles needed.