Succulent, smoky buttery beer-braised mussels steamed over hot charcoals and hickory wood. Sopped up with grilled baguette…whew!
- 1 cup flat-leaf Italian parsley, loosely packed
- 1/2 cup cilantro, loosely packed
- 2 tablespoons fresh oregano, SEE NOTE
- 1 sprig fresh thyme
- 1 shallot, roughly chopped
- 6 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 1/4 cup red wine vinegar, plus more if needed
- Juice from half a lemon
- 1/3 cup olive oil, plus more if needed
- Sea salt, to taste
- Black pepper, to taste
- 1 stick butter
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 to 1 cup onion, diced (amount is totally up to you)
- 6 fat cloves of garlic, finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon granulated garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon granulated onion
- 1 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes, drained
- Flaky kosher salt, to taste
- Black pepper, to taste
- 1 12-ounce bottle beer (I used plain ol Budweiser)
- 1 2-pound (32 ounces) bag of fresh mussels, SEE NOTE
- 2 tablespoons flat-leaf Italian parsley, finely chopped, divided
- Half of a lemon, in wedges
- 1 baguette, sliced on a bias, about a half-inch thick
- Olive oil
- Bread seasoning
- Sea salt, if needed
Prep tips: See blog post above for tips on how to clean and prepare your mussels. Keep your cleaned and live mussels in a bowl of cold water while you prepare everything else. Remember to toss out any that don’t close.
NOTE: Set up your charcoal grill. Fill a chimney 3/4 full of charcoal and ignite from the bottom using lighter cubes or fire starters. When the corners of the coals at the top start to ash (about 15-20 minutes later — during this time, you should be inside prepping your meal), carefully dump the hot coals in an even layer on one-half of the bottom of the grill. You want to create a super-hot side and a cooler side (direct/indirect). Place 1 to 2 small wood chunks of your favorite smoke flavor on top of the hot coals. Place the grate inside of the grill, and cover. Open the bottom and top vents of your grill, and allow the grill to get nice and hot while you get everything in place.
Drizzle olive oil all over the sliced bread, and season with bread seasoning and a little sea salt if your bread seasoning doesn’t have salt included. Set aside.
For the chimichurri
- In a food processor or mini-blender, pulse the parsley, cilantro, fresh oregano, thyme, garlic, shallot, and crushed red pepper flakes until finely chopped.
- Pour in the lemon juice, red wine vinegar, and olive oil. Pulse until combined.
- Taste and adjust the consistency by adding more red wine vinegar or olive oil as needed.
- Season with salt and pepper.
- Transfer to a small bowl and keep cold until ready to use.
For the mussels
- Using grill gloves, place a large cast iron skillet over the hot side of the grill. Add the stick of butter and olive oil. When the butter has melted and starts to sizzle, add the onion and garlic. Cook, stirring often, until the onions are softened — about 3 minutes. Season the onions and garlic with crushed red pepper flakes, smoked paprika, granulated onion, and granulated garlic. Stir to combine and bloom the spices, about a minute.
- Add the drained diced tomatoes and cook, stirring often for about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. When the mixture has thickened up just slightly and is no longer super liquidy, add the beer. Be careful doing this over the flames. I don’t want y’all to burn your damn house down, okay?
- Anyway, let the beer cook down for just a minute or two, then add the mussels in an even layer. Cover the grill and let them steam and smoke for about 4 to 5 minutes. When all of the mussels are open, toss them in the buttery beer mixture to get all that flavor in the shells. Sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of fresh parsley and lemon wedges (you can squeeze some of the lemon juice in there if you’d like). Taste the broth to make sure it’s up to par, and season to adjust if necessary.
- Move the mussels to the cooler side of the grill to keep them warm while you toast the bread.
For the grilled bread
- Set the oiled side of the bread slices face-down on the hot side of your grill and toast until lightly charred, about 30 seconds or so. Please keep checking them so they don’t burn!
- Remove them and set them inside of a bowl as they toast.
- Set aside.
Place the hot skillet of mussels on a heat-proof trivet. Pour in some of the chimichurri and remaining tablespoon of parsley and toss to evenly combine. Serve with the grilled bread and enjoy.
Please read this blog post if this is your first time working with mussels. I gave you tons of tips to help you through this process.
If you don’t have fresh oregano, you can use dried — but just 2 teaspoons.
- Category: Seafood
- Method: Grilling
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: grilled mussels, grilling, how to cook mussels, beer braised mussels, drunken mussels