Mussels & Fries.

IMG_20140831_164932_1_1Part of the things that make blogging so much fun for me is the interaction I get to have with everyone else.
Because in reality, I don’t think I’m a people person, way too impatient for all that, yet I love how effortless it is to build virtual friendships with other bloggers.
Actually getting to know folks by their real name. Communicating outside of the blogging world.
That’s why I love About pages 🙂

Besides giving me a bevy of inspiration, a lot of you guys are just a fucking riot.
Seriously…scroll through the comments section.
Genie said the other day she’d roll around in tar and feathers with me…


Anyway, a couple weeks ago, Marta of Plate du Jour, made a comment that we choose a dish we both like and post our interpretation of how to create it.
I thought that was a brilliant idea because if you haven’t ventured over to Plate du Jour yet, Marta can fucking throw DOWN.
And she’s funny as all hell.
A fucking challenge.

Multiple, multiple emails later…the first 33 were just us shooting the shit and bitching about work, we settled on Mussels & Fries as our dish with only one rule: post on the same day, at the same time and somehow tie into each others post.

So Mussels & Fries it is.
Also known as Moules Frites.
Another classic food combination, widely popular in Europe but more so in France I think.
I say so because I actually first had Mussels & Fries only a couple years ago in France.
It was absolutely incredible…

My best friend Amy & I were vacationing in Cannes for a few weeks at Isabellas apartment, and spent the first 5 days in Paris.
Our first night in Paris, she goes, “DANA!! YOU’VE GOT TO TRY MOULES FRITES!!”

Amy has a very loud personality..


“Whaa?  The hell is that?”


“But Amy we literally just walked in the hotel, can a bitch get a shower first?

I whined.
She conceded.
We got dressed.
I accepted my fate that the first night, which coincidentally was a Friday, was meant to go from 0 – 100 real quick.
And it did.
But I’m only talking about the food part here so don’t even try it.

And the funniest thing?
Even though Marta and I have been planing this for a couple weeks now, I was still unprepared.
Prior to cooking this, I had about 4 hours to grocery shop, cook, take the pictures, mull over what I was going to wear, do makeup and get out the door to this fashion show I had to be at later in the evening.
I’ll post pictures soon.
When I made mention of all that to Marta, she just laughed at me and told me her neighbor tried to get in her door last night.

I told her, I’d love to have those problems, but we up in here workin’.


Mussels & Fries

What I Used.

1 cup dry White Wine. 2/3 Rosemary Stalks. 3lbs fresh Mussels. 5/6 Russet Potatoes. A large handful Cilantro. 2 large Shallots. 1 tbsp minced Garlic. Olive Oil. Salt. Pepper. Red Pepper Flakes. Garlic Powder. Olive Oil Cooking Spray.

What I Did.

ive got cake blogRight, so pre-heat oven to 425F and those potatoes.. you want to slice them 1/2″ thick.
In a separate bowl, mix an equal portion: salt, pepper.
Give a quick shake of garlic powder
Throw in some rosemary.
Put the sliced potatoes in a large zip-locked bag, add in the bowl of seasonings and shake vigorously to coat.
IMG_20140831_152646_1When things look properly seasoned, spread the potato slices on a baking rack, previously sprayed with cooking oil.
Try and keep each piece apart.
IMG_20140831_153106_1Bake for 25 mins or until golden brown.
It took one batch of my shit to burn before I figured I ought to pay attention to time.
Time matters here.
Set the cooked fries aside somewhere warm when done.

Cook the mussels by first cleaning them, like here.
Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a large pot and saute 1/2 cup diced shallots and 1 tbsp minced garlic.
Cook until fragrant.
IMG_20140609_150621_1Then pour in 1 cup dry white wine.
Bring to boil and let simmer until it is reduced to about 1/2 cup.
At this point, add in the mussels.
mussels and fries recipeCook, covered, for about 8 mins or until shells open.
When the mussels have opened, stir in 1 cup of roughly chopped Cilantro and a few shakes of red pepper flakes.
IMG_20140831_163426_1 IMG_20140831_164257_1


Using a slotted spoon, serve the mussels on side of the fries.

moules frites IMG_20140831_165410_2moules frites recipe

STOOPP eating all the fries.

IMG_20140831_170751_1 IMG_20140831_164932_1_1IMG_20140831_164859_1 IMG_20140831_165756_1 IMG_20140831_170653_1 IMG_20140831_170429_1 IMG_20140831_170533_1 IMG_20140831_165538_1 IMG_20140831_165710_1

Donk the fries in the mussel broth and try to have a meaningful conversation with someone.
Then go look at Martas version of this.

Her pictures are fanstastic.
Hate that bitch..

89 thoughts on “Mussels & Fries.

  1. Your moules-frites look delicious! Moules-frites are like THE dish from the area where I live, and the season has just started! Next Saturday my town (Lille) will be holding the biggest street-fair-garage-sale in Europe and the tradition is to eat moules-frites on that day (several times). Then each restaurant piles up the shells outside, and a jury attributes a prize to the restaurant with the largest pile (and yes, the smell is quite something by the end of the weekend, a good thing there aren’t any restaurants right in my street); it’s called “the mussel-pile competition” (concours de tas de moules). I’ll actually be working at a friend’s restaurant, making both mussels and fries all day… fortunately my friend is NOT planning on having the biggest pile.

    1. Thanks Darya!!
      That sounds sooooo AWESOME!
      Good for you for helping out.
      Don’t get splashed out there with mussel juice :p

      I’ll have to come out there this time next year to compete.
      In eating that is 🙂

      1. I won’t be wearing anything pretty or sexy like what you share on your blog next Saturday. More like old rags I can just throw into the garbage along with piles of potato peels, onion skins, and mussel shells. 😀 It’s gonna be real fun as we are all just friends lending a hand (and stuffing ourselves with good food and great local beer)

  2. OMG!!! Can’t believe we used almost the same type of bowl for the mussels!! You’re more professional than me when comes to fries I admit 🙂 it doesn’t look like you didn’t have time to cook! The pictures look great!

  3. You crack me up. The tar and feathers was in context, kinda. Not so much here. Oh, to eat mussels and fries in Paris. Sounds wonderful.

    My best food memories often include a story and the food is enhanced because of it. When I recreate one of those dishes, it is good because it transports me back but it won’t be as good as the original because of the sights, smells, action and story.

    Not dissin your version of mussels m’kay? Because you and Marta have created another story with these. Food is almost time travel that brings you closer to people. Modules Frites was a dish you shared with Amy and now Marta and you might think of them next time.

  4. Your photos are THE BUSINESS!! My mouth is actually watering as I am a huge fan of Belgian mussels and chips. Takes me back to a lovely Belgian Beer Bar in inner Sydney we frequented before sproglets came along and ruined, nay, blessed our lives. Looking forward to a metaphorical (metaphysical?) food throw down between you and Mr Food. 🙂

    1. Hahah!!
      Thank you 🙂 🙂
      Marta always takes these incredible pictures…she was even talking smack about what kinda camera lens I needed to buy lol
      I feel pretty good about my pictures 🙂

      I love that this post is bringing folks back to so many good memories. Lotta good moments around Mussels & fries 🙂

      I like that, metaphysical 🙂
      Now that everyone is feeling all cocky, contenders are rising from everywhere haha.

    1. It really was a blast Prudy!
      And to think we coordinated all this through email. It’s incredible, the similarities in our final results.
      It was a great challenge!
      And thanks for stopping by, I’ll be sure to check out your blog too 🙂 🙂

  5. We had moules on Friday, delicious! I love the plating in what looks like a mortar, beautiful. Interestingly enough I just saw a similar technique on shutterstock and I made a note to recreate it. Moules frites, steak frites and steak tartar is what I lived on in Paris.

    1. Yeeeesss girl!!
      I love Entrecotes in Paris! They’re claim to take is Steak Frites and the line, is ALWAYS around the fucking corner. Mmmph!
      And correctimundo on the mortar. The kick off it all is that Marta had the same use for it too! Scary how alike we were haha

  6. You even made your own fries?! I’m seriously impressed. The photos are beautiful and you always make me laugh out loud with your writing but especially with this one. Keep these cooking challenges coming, the competitive streak obviously brings out the best in you! And if you want to do a baking one, I’m in!

  7. You’ve just given me a wave of inspiration! I will post my take on this dish as soon as I can. (Don’t hold your breath though. I leave for Istanbul, Nepal then India on Sunday so I may not get around to this for a couple of months. Haha!)

  8. So funny your post and its history… my first time with moules frites in Brussels that made me falling in love with this, made it at home a lot of times, in spite of my mediterranean origins that want moussels just with garlic, olive olive oil, black pepper, and… nothing else! If I said to my sicilian grandma that I, here in France were I Iive, cook moussels with cream and potatoes she would think I have some mental problems… 😀

  9. Oh man, I did not know mussels and fries was a thing! I was going to make mussels for dinner tonight & may have to rethink my original plan. Especially since I can call it moules-frites & be fancy & French. Thank you for opening my eyes!

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