Naughty mussels



10 min


2 servings

* PLUS Cooking time: 7 minutes
Naughty mussels

Andreas Trauttmansdorff


  • 1-kg bag fresh mussels
  • 2 shallots
  • 1 small chipotle in adobo sauce , drained and seeded (see Choosing chipotles, below)
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1/3 cup tequila
  • 1/3 cup 35% cream
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tomato
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh coriander , for garnish


  • Scrub mussels. Pinch any thread clusters at sides of mussels and pull to remove. Discard any open mussels. Finely chop shallots. Remove chipotle from sauce and finely chop 1/2 tsp (2 mL). (Refrigerate or freeze remaining.) Mince garlic. Melt butter in a large wide saucepan set over medium heat. Add shallots, chipotle and garlic. Stir often until soft, 2 minutes. Add tequila, cream and salt. Bring to a boil over high heat. Boil, uncovered, stirring occasionally to thicken, 1 to 2 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, chop tomato. Stir mussels and tomato into cream. Cover and continue cooking on high, stirring halfway through, until mussels open, 4 to 6 minutes. Remove from heat. Discard any unopened mussels. Taste and stir in more chipotle, if you wish. Spoon into bowls. Pour sauce overtop. Sprinkle with coriander. Wonderful with crusty bread for dipping.

Nutrition (per serving)

  • Calories
  • 433,
  • Protein
  • 17.7 g,
  • Carbohydrates
  • 12.2 g,
  • Fat
  • 28.8 g,
  • Fibre
  • 1.2 g,
  • Sodium
  • 867 mg.

Inspired by a recipe in Steven Raichlen’s Big Flavor Cookbook (Black Dog & Leventhal), these mussels are deliciously cheeky, with tequila and spicy chipotle!

Cleaning mussels

To clean mussels, scrub them under cold running water. Then pull or snip off the dark, stringy “beards” that stick out of some of the shells.

Choosing chipotles

Chipotle peppers add a seductive smokiness to dishes. They’re sold in cans (often in adobo sauce) in the Mexican section of supermarkets, as purée (near bottled garlic) and as chipotle Tabasco. Instead of 1/2 tsp (2 mL) chopped chipotle in adobo sauce, use 1 tsp (5 mL) purée or 1 1/2 tsp (7 mL) chipotle Tabasco.