Mussels in White Wine Sauce

Mussels in White Wine Sauce - How I Faced My Fears

I don’t know about you, but there have always been meals that I have been scared to cook. There are simply some types of food that seem very difficult to handle. And some recipes seem to be so complicated that I worry it would take me hours making them. (I must confess here that I am happy to spend a whole day in the kitchen only if I prepare a feast not a single dish). Mussels are a great example of ingredients that used to scare me. I don't know why, maybe because I didn't have them that often and treated them as a delicacy. Or perhaps because it used to be almost impossible to purchase them in Poland. Or probably I simply didn't know how to make mussels. But I loved eating them so, one day I decided to face my fears finally and bought this dreaded seafood. And soon I realized they weren’t as tricky as I thought!

How to Clean Mussels?

Although it takes some time to get them ready for cooking, the method is not hard at all. So, how to clean mussels? First, you have to rinse them. Then you have to check each one. When it is open, you should tap it on the kitchen surface and see how it behaves. If it closes, then you can use it. Otherwise, it is dead, and you should discard it. You must also throw away all the damaged ones. Next, you should remove any barnacles or "beards" from all of the closed shells. Afterwards, you should rinse them thoroughly again. And now they are not only ready to use but you also have behind you the most time-consuming part of preparation. Cooking these delicious classic Mussels in White Wine Sauce will now take you only minutes. P.S. Once you know how easy it is to clean mussels, you may want to try them in some other recipes. [recipe-video]

Mussels in White Wine Sauce

A classic dish of mussels cooked in white wine with parsley, perfect with a fresh baguette.
Servings people
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes



  1. Prepare the mussels: rinse them very well in cold water.
  2. Take one mussel: if it is damaged, discard it straight away and if it is open, give it a vigorous tap. If it stays open, discard.
  3. If a mussel is closed (or closes after tapping), wash it and scrape off with a knife any barnacles; remove “beard” that may be between the two shells.
  4. Repeat the above with all the mussels.
  5. Rinse all of them again.
  6. In a big pan (big enough for all the mussels) melt the butter, add the shallots and cook over low heat for 3-5 minutes until translucent.
  7. Pour in the wine, add the bay leaf and bring to boil.
  8. Add the mussels, cover the pan tightly with a lid and steam on a high heat for 5 minutes, shake the pan vigorously 1-2 times in between.
  9. Remove the bay leaf and any unopened mussels; add the chopped parsley, stir and serve straight away with baguette to mop up the sauce.

Recipe Notes

The recipe was adapted from “The New Fish Cooking Encyclopedia” by Kate Whiteman.

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Agnieszka Weiner

Hi, I am Agnieszka, and I am passionate about delicious but healthy food. Many healthy dishes are bland and uninteresting. I reject this. So I created my blog Tastes of Health to share my yummy recipes for healthier (often plant-based and gluten-free) versions of family favourites. I look forward to receiving your feedback after you try them.

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