Time: 15 minutes

Servings: 2

Here is a dish for anyone who is intimidated by seafood! Classic moules marinières with its shallot white wine sauce gets a New England chowder-y spin with the addition of bacon, corn, and a touch of cream. Not only do these mussels look (and taste) like you could have ordered them in a restaurant, they come together super quickly, making them a great option for both weeknight cooking and weekend entertaining. Mussels take well to riffs, so feel free to put your spin on things. Just don't forget to serve these with a spoon and some crusty bread for sopping up all that great sauce!

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

2 slices of thick-cut bacon, thinly sliced

1 shallot, thinly sliced 

1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

Kosher salt, to taste

Freshly cracked black pepper

1 ear of corn, husked and kernels removed (alternatively: 1/2 cup of canned or frozen corn) 

2 pounds mussels, soaked, scrubbed, and debearded

1/2 cup dry white wine

1/4 cup heavy cream

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces

Zest of 1 lemon (optional: reserve and cut lemon into wedges, for serving)

2 tablespoons chives and/or parsley, chopped, for garnish

Crusty bread, like baguette, for serving

Lay your table for life.

  • In a large, heavy-bottomed pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add the bacon, shallot, and red pepper flakes. Season with salt and pepper. Let the bacon fat render and saute until both bacon and shallot are softened and golden brown around the edges, about 4 to 5 minutes. Add the corn and give everything a good stir so that the corn is coated in the oil. Add the mussels, wine, and heavy cream, giving everything another stir. Raise the heat to medium-high. Cover with a tight-fitting lid and cook for 5 to 6 minutes (don't peek!). 

  • Remove the lid. Most of the mussels should have popped open by now; if not, cover the lid for one more minute. Remove the lid, ensure that all of the shells have opened (if not, discard any stubborn ones), and lower the heat to medium-low. Add the butter and lemon zest, gently tossing the mussels with the sauce. Garnish with chives and/or parsley. Turn off the heat.

  • Plate and serve with optional lemon wedges and crusty beard for mopping up the sauce. Don't forget to bring out a bowl for the spent shells!

  • If you also love potatoes, here's a quick how-to for the air fryer potato wedges I served the mussels with: Cut small potatoes into wedges. Toss with extra-virgin olive oil, salt & pepper. Cook at 400F for 10 minutes. Open and give everything a toss. Cook at 400F for another 10 minutes. Open and give it another toss. Cook at 400F for a further 5 minutes (or more) until golden brown. Toss with more salt and don't forget the mayonnaise.