Thursday, October 8, 2009

Mythia me skortho kai ouzo: Flaming Mussels with Garlic & Ouzo

In Greek: μύδια με σκόρδο και ούζο, pronounced MEE-theeyah meh SKOR-thoh keh OO-zoh

Once cooking starts, this fabulous dish of mussels with herbs and ouzo takes 15 minutes to make. The recipe calls for mussels, garlic, parsley, thyme or savory, and ouzo. If you have the opportunity to cook tableside, the ouzo added at the end will flame up, for an exciting treat.

Cook Time: 15 minutes


· 1 pound of cleaned shelled mussels (about 35 medium)
· 10-15 mussels in shells, cleaned of beards
· 1/2 cup of olive oil
· 7-8 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
· 1/2 bunch of fresh flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
· 1 teaspoon of sea salt
· 1/4 teaspoon of pepper
· 1 tablespoon of fresh crushed thyme or savory
· 1/3 cup of ouzo
· 1/3 cup of water


Prepare mussels: Clean well to remove all traces of sand. Dump into a pot of boiling water for a few minutes until shells open. Drain, rinse, and either remove mussels (for the shelled), or leave in shell for the 10-15 pieces.

In a deep nonstick skillet or frying pan, bring olive oil to high heat and sauté the garlic quickly to soften. Add all mussels (those with and without shells) and continue to sauté for a couple of minutes. Add parsley, salt, pepper, thyme or savory, and water. As soon as the liquid cooks down, add ouzo - carefully, because the food will flame up.

Douse the flames and serve.

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