Moules Provencal – Everyday Food with Sarah Carey

Here’s one thing I’m thankful for this year: Today, chef John Besh, New Orleans restaurateur and author of Cooking from the Heart: My Favorite Lessons Learned Along the Way, is joining me in the kitchen to make an elegant and incredibly easy dinner, moules Provencal. The mussels are cooked in an intensely fragrant broth of garlic, scallions, tomatoes, fennel fronds, and a touch of vermouth (John says it helps to bring out the sweetness of the mussels). These mussels were so tasty, I couldn’t help but eat them right out of the pot. Make this heartfelt meal for your family and learn more about John’s books and projects at

Sarah’s Tip of the Day:
Using your fingers or a paring knife, pull down firmly on the wispy strings attached to the mussels and discard before cooking (while edible, the mussels’ “beard” have an unpleasant texture).

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4 pounds mussels
1/4 cup olive oil
1 bunch scallions, thinly sliced
Pinch fennel fronds, chopped
4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
2 medium tomatoes, chopped
Pinch crushed red pepper
1 cup dry vermouth
2 sprigs thyme
2 sprigs fresh parsley, chopped
Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
Leaves from 4 sprigs fresh basil, sliced
Crusty bread, for serving

Rinse and scrub the mussels under cold running water. Remove their beard (the small strands attached to the mussels) by pulling them down firmly between your fingers or with a pairing knife. Discard any cracked mussels.
Heat oil in a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat. Add scallions, fennel, and garlic. Cook about 5 minutes. Add tomatoes and red pepper flakes. Add vermouth, stirring with a wooden spoon to scrape off any brown bits from the pan. Add thyme, parsley, mussels, and season with salt and pepper. Stir to combine. Cook, covered, until the mussels open, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle with basil and serve with crusty bread.


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Sarah Carey is the editor of Everyday Food magazine and her job is to come up with the best ways to make fast, delicious food at home. But she’s also a mom to two hungry kids, so the question “What’s for dinner?” is never far from her mind — or theirs, it seems! Her days can get crazy busy (whose don’t?), so these videos are all about her favorite fast, fresh meals — and the tricks she uses to make it all SO much easier.

Moules Provencal – Everyday Food with Sarah Carey

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