There are few calories and the taste is excellent

“Different types of seafood, including mussels, are becoming more popular every year. Consumers are becoming more discerning about their food, daringly tasting products they have never tried before, trying new recipes, learning about the food of other countries while traveling, and trying to replicate it in their own kitchens. We offer our customers traditional, well-known salmon. Or even cod, but black halibut, flying squid tentacles or mussels are often found in the baskets,” says Vilma Judkajien, food expert at the “Iki” shopping chain.

Loved in many countries of the world

According to experts, there are about 17 species of mussels. The size of the geldings varies according to the season: largest and fleshiest in October and smallest in March.

Mussels are very popular in Belgium, Holland and France. In these countries, mussels are combined with fried potatoes and seasoned with cream, bacon, different types of cheese or fresh herb sauces. In the Netherlands, mussels are often fried in batter or baked with breadcrumbs.

In Italy, mussels are mixed with other seafood, often steamed and served with fresh herbs and lemon juice. Mussels are often served with pasta or used in seafood soups. In Spain, they are prepared in the same way as in Italy, but sometimes these dishes are used as a filling for their traditional croquettes.

Spaniards flavor their traditional rice dish paella with mussels, adding it to soups or eating it as a snack. Mussels are also popular in Asia: in these countries, they are often used in seafood soups, which are flavored with coconut milk, ginger, coriander, hot pepper and other Asian spices, and are part of traditional curries.

Preparation is simple

According to V. Juodkazienė, mussels are an easy-to-prepare product that takes less than ten minutes to prepare properly.

“Cooking mussels at home may seem like a complicated process. However, they are actually very easy and quick to prepare at home. The most important thing is to peel and wash the acorns well under cold water and finally fry them for 5-7 minutes in the prepared sauce, soups or rice and pasta dishes. Seasoning with it,” says V. Judkajien says.

Mussels usually need to be cooked until all their shells open, he said. If several jeldels are unopened when preparing them, they are not suitable for eating, as they can be poisonous.

According to nutritionists, mussels are not only tasty and easy to prepare, but extremely beneficial for health. Mussels are an excellent source of protein and rich in amino acids. Including mussels in the diet strengthens muscles and the immune system as well as bones.

Mussels are also rich in iron, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, selenium and zinc. They are rich in vitamin B12, which is essential for the production of red blood cells and their consumption helps fight anxiety, depression, insomnia and improves mood.

Mussels are not rich in various useful substances, but they are low in calories, 100 grams of mussels contain only 172 calories, so this good is also suitable for those who want to lose weight.

V. Juodkazienė also offers several simple recipes in which you use mussels creatively.

Mussels with chorizo ​​and tomatoes

You will need:

  • A drizzle of olive oil
  • ½ cup chopped chorizo ​​sausage
  • 1 medium sized chopped onion
  • 1 medium chopped fennel
  • 6 chopped cloves of garlic
  • A large handful of cherry tomatoes
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • A pinch of salt
  • 1 cup broth
  • A kilogram of peeled mussels
  • A handful of fresh coriander leaves
  • Lemons
  • A few slices of your favorite fresh bread

How to produce

Heat the olive oil in a large pan. When it’s hot, add the chorizo ​​pieces and fry everything for a few minutes. Then add chopped onions, fennel, 5 cloves of garlic and fry a little more.

Add tomatoes, red chillies, add some salt and fry for few minutes. Pour in the broth and cook for a few minutes until the liquid thickens a little.

Finally, add the mussels and mix everything. Cover the pot and simmer for about 3-5 minutes until the gels open. Sprinkle all over with fresh cilantro and sprinkle with lime juice.

Toast slices of your favorite bread in the oven or in a dry pan and rub with fresh garlic and serve alongside the dish on plates.

Spaghetti with mussels

You will need:

  • 2 tablespoons of butter
  • A drizzle of olive oil
  • 4 chopped cloves of garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper flakes
  • A few peeled tomatoes
  • Favorite Spaghetti
  • A pinch of salt
  • A splash of broth
  • A kilogram of peeled mussels
  • Fresh chopped parsley

How to produce

Melt butter and 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet or saucepan. Add garlic and red pepper flakes and fry everything for a few minutes. Add chopped tomatoes and fry again.

Cook the pasta, reserving 1 1/2 cups of the pasta cooking liquid. Add the broth to the boiling tomatoes. Then add the mussels and 1/4 cup of the pasta cooking liquid. Cover with a lid and cook for about 4 minutes. Add another 1/4 cup of the pasta cooking liquid to the mussels, reduce the heat, and simmer for a few more minutes.

Finally, add the pasta to the sauce, garnish with parsley and drizzle with olive oil. Delicious!

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