• Aromatic rice-stuffed mussels (midye dolma) (Alan Benson)
Forget protein shakes and carb-loading, the best way to increase your mussel mass is by downing a dozen molluscs. Stuffed, stir-fried or popped into paella, the sustainable seafood is something to feel good about.
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1 Oct 2018 - 11:40 AM  UPDATED 10 Oct 2018 - 1:02 PM

1. Swap beer gut for beer gratin

Topped with a spicy sabayon gratin, Gabriel Gaté’s mussels are inspired from his Taste le Tour trip through The Netherlands. This appetiser is best served as soon as the sabayon has browned, so remember to keep your foot on the pedal.

 

2. Learn from the Spaniards

Here, Matthew Evans takes a pared-back approach to cooking paella, overlooking peas, prawns and various other proteins, in favour of our hero, the mussel. Built upon a base of paprika, saffron, capsicum and thyme, the crowd-pleaser sings of Spanish simplicity. Sure, you could add chicken or rabbit thigh, but why mess with a good thing?

 

3. Icebergs ahead!

For many of us, iceberg lettuce belongs in a salad bowl, not a stir-fry. Hold onto your hats folks, because O Tama Carey is about to smash those preconceptions. Presenting stir-fried mussels with iceberg, ginger and shallots. It’s light, fresh and aromatic with a subtle sea salt flavour.

 

4. Brimming with rice

Because of their size and shell-ish character, mussels are often ignored in main menus, reserved for dainty dishes. This Turkish recipe from Somer Sivrioglu is a more-ish way to get more from your mussels. First, prepare cracked rice with pimento, pine nuts, tomatoes and raisins. Next, stuff your mollusc friends!

Aromatic rice-stuffed mussels (midye dolma)
 

5. Go green

Not only are mussels delicious, but they’re also one of the most sustainably farmed seafood varieties in Australia. To appreciate the awesomeness of this undervalued ingredient, take Matt Evans's lead: simply barbecue and serve with gremolata.

 

6. Don’t be pici

Probably the simplest pasta you’re ever going to make, pici doesn’t need a machine or any special ingredients – just a bit of flour, semolina and water. On his Destination Flavour Down Under trip, Adam Liaw paired the chewy pasta with white wine, saffron, parsley and mussels. All we can say is it was ridiculously good.

  

7. Hello, Sunday sessions

For flavour and fragrance, you cannot go past moules frites. This Belgian recipe carries the torch for a boozy afternoon - mussels, mayonnaise, chips and beer - it doesn't get much better than that. And it's ready to go into one giant pot. #musselgains

Moules frites

Maeve O'Meara is back in Food Safari Water airing 8pm, Wednesdays on SBS and then you can catch-up on all episodes via SBS On Demand. Visit the program page for recipes, videos and more.

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