Mussels Italiano

"This is another recipe from my Italian sister in law. Its good with Italian crusty bread to mop up the broth. Prep time includes soaking. Based on some queries from other chefs, I'm expanding the directions to include more information about buying, storing and cleaning mussels."
photo by maryjane in spain photo by maryjane in spain
photo by maryjane in spain
Ready In:




  • When you bring your mussels home from the market, discard any that are chipped, broken or otherwise damaged; discard any mussel that is open.
  • If you are not using right away, cover with damp paper towels in a container that can be tightly closed and store in the refrigerator.
  • Just before cooking, wash the mussels in several changes of cold water.
  • Using a small knife or a dry towel, remove the beards by pulling out towards the hinged side of the mussel.
  • To remove any remaining sand, soak mussels for about 30 minutes in cold water containing a handful of salt and a handful of flour.
  • Take each mussel from the bowl and using a firm brush, remove any barnacles before placing into another bowl of clear water.
  • Melt butter in a medium sized pot; saute onions til clear.
  • Add garlic& stir for another minute.
  • Add tomato, oregano, salt& pepper and cook until tomato is soft.
  • Add wine& bring to a slow boil.
  • Dry the mussels with a clean towel, place into pot, cover & steam for 4 minutes; remove the lid & stir the mussels.
  • At this point, most of the mussels should be open; replace the lid and steam for another 2 - 4 minutes.
  • Discard any that don't open.
  • Divide into serving bowls& cover with broth.
  • If you increase the serving size for this recipe, don't add too many mussels to the pot at once or stack them on top of each other as it will make it difficult for the mussels to open due to the weight.

Questions & Replies

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  1. Raichka
    My husband and I frequently order mussels when dining out, but I'd never tried cooking them myself. I was a little intimidated, but your step-by-step instructions made preparing them a breeze. The cooking time was quick, and the results were amazing. The broth was delicious, and the mussels were cooked perfectly. Thanks for sharing this recipe! I'm adding this recipe to my "impress the guests" list!
  2. Gerald Sexton
    Very quick and easy, with charming flavors. This is now a staple when I want to cook fresh mussels for friends!
  3. Nes5601
    Restaurant quality dish. Absolutely love it.
  4. ipuccapi
    Great, quick and simple recipe! Husband and I love it for it's simplicity and taste and use this recipe when we want something that is not too complex. Thanks for sharing!
  5. gwynn
    This is a very good recipe. It is so quick and easy. It is nice enough to serve company. Thanks for posting.


  1. sherldapearl84
    This recipe is amazing my fiancé doesn’t eat mussels but when he tried this I totally change his mind thank you and I will be following you were the other recipes thank you so much delicious
  2. Just Call Me Martha
    Excellent! I doubled the recipe as well (using olive oil instead of butter) and added some freshly torn basil to the top when serving.
  3. Wild Thyme Flour
    made these for my DH and he loved them as much as my usual recipe. I used olive oil instead of butter and doubled the sauce ingredients. Oh and finished it with a sprinkling of fresh parsley. Thanks


In the words of Tracy Byrd, "I'm from the country & I like it that way"!! On May 1, 2008 my husband and I started a new adventure. We'll be living in a 37 foot RV while our new home is under construction. Its out in the country on a dead end dirt road with lots of trees. For the next 4 months or so, most meals will be cooked on the BBQ and life will be full of challenges! We love spending quality time with our friends & family - especially the grandkids!! The photo is 4 generations - my 84 year old mother, myself, my daughter & my youngest granddaughter - taken at the end of 2006. I've participated in many contests & events here on Zaar but this is the first banner that I've posted. My thanks to Dreamgoddess for hosting the contest & SusieD for the banner design! <img src="">
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