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Mar 15, 2011 10:14 AM

Frozen Mussels

I've just found frozen, cleaned mussels. I know I can steam them in marinara or a wine sauce...but is there anything else interesting I can do with them. They cook up so quickly and are so sweet. I'd just love to find other uses for them. Thanks!

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  1. Make a pasta sauce out of them. Here's one recipe from Mario Batali:

    1. Saute or broil in Escargot butter. Bilibi with a pinch of saffron. Fritters. Hang-town fry with Mussels instead of oysters. Thai curry, the list could be endless.

      4 Replies
      1. re: chefj

        Am I then just defrosting the mussels? Or do I need to steam first?

        1. re: DaisyM

          I am not sureI know what you mean.
          All of the applications that I mentioned you would cook them in the dish its self.

          1. re: chefj

            But should I defrost them first so they don't add additional water? Or do I just throw them in frozen?

            1. re: DaisyM

              Since I do not know the product I do not know if they are IQF or frozen in their own juice or frozen in water.

      2. I've bought frozen mussels a couple of times, but I find them risky at best. For openers, you have no idea whether they've been thawed and frozen again until you get them home and open them and that fishy smell tells you that you've been had. And then the waters where the mussels grew have a great deal to do with how good they taste. I've pretty much given up on frozen mussels. I have a pack of blue mussels in the freezer as I write this that I seem to be waiting to age enough that I can throw them out in clear conscience. They are one of two packs I bought at the same time, and the first one was so bad I threw them out after cooking. From now on, I'll be buying fresh mussels only, bearding them myself if need be, and enjoying their wonderful flavor.

        One of my favorite ways to cook mussels is to soften some chopped onions in butter, add some chopped parsley, a whole bunch of mussels, some white wine (usually 1/4 cup of white vermouth) and some chicken broth, cover and steam until open. Serve in bowls with crusty artisan bread to sop up the juices. If there is a specific herb or spice you like, give it a try. Couldn't hurt. It makes a fantastic lunch!

        The Turks have a method of stuffing mussels with rice that is delicious beyond words. If anyone is interested, I've seen recipes for "stuffed mussels" on Turkish cooking websites that look good. But be warned. they are a fair amount of work, but so worth it!

        7 Replies
        1. re: Caroline1

          Caroline1, I couldn't agree more about frozen mussels. I remember the only thing I've sent back in restaurant in the last ten years was frozen mussels. I asked the server if the mussels were fresh or frozen. She claimed fresh. I asked her to verify with the manager. She also claimed fresh. I ordered the mussels marinara as an appetizer on the contigency that the mussels were fresh and not frozen. Out came the bowl with NZ greenlip mussels on the half shell. I didn't need to try one, but I did anyway. I asked the server and the manager to speak with the cook - lo and behold, frozen mussels. The rest of the meal was fine - quite enjoyable. Please don't try to tell an east coaster that frozen mussels are fresh. Just don't. They take on an absolutely unmistakable texture change when they are frozen. I'm not trying to rain on anyone's parade at all, I'm just saying that imo, frozen mussels aren't worth it if they're free. DasiyM, hope you enjoy your mussels however you decide to prep them. If you do, stick with them frozen. If you try them fresh, you might not be able to go back.

          1. re: gordeaux

            My fear is that I won't thoroughly clean fresh mussels and death and destruction will result! That's why I was so excited about the cleaned mussels.

            1. re: DaisyM

              They are great in that they are cleaned for you, but long ago, I made the decision that properly cleaning fresh mussels is so much more worth it than buying frozen. I'm sure you will do them justice tho. Enjoy.

                1. re: hypomyces

                  Yikes! I sure don't need any more sins.

                  1. re: DaisyM

                    “Some rise by sin, and some by virtue fall”
                    William Shakespeare

              1. re: DaisyM

                Daisy, you have little to fear! Farmed mussels don't even need much cleaning, and lots don't have beards. This thread has lots of good tips and links on cleaning, making sure they're alive and good, etc.:

          2. From frozen...See Google headings that incorporate the NZ frozen large mussel. Firstly cream butter, a little minced garlic, finely chopped parsley, then using 2 teaspoons, shape and place an amount on each mussel. Sprinkle with fine Panko breadcrumbs.... Place under preheated grill for 2/3 minutes until nice and golden.