Mussels and spaghetti |

Mussels and Muscles

Posted on Posted in Recipes

I have a really stressful weekend this weekend- 22 hours at one job, 8 at another, and the third of 3 exams (in a row) on Tuesday.  But, I also have an awesome boyfriend who offered to make me dinner tonight.  I was expecting something simple, like baked chicken and pasta, but no- he went all out with Giada de Laurentiis’ recipe for clams and spaghetti.

The print version, in case you care.

Only with mussels, because that’s all he could find, but still, that’s pretty darn fancy.  And so incredibly delicious!  It was a very satisfying and relaxing way to end part of a day of work (and start another part).

Mussels and spaghetti |
And it allowed me to get work done while he was busy in the kitchen- quite a relief!

As an added bonus, mussels are a good source of weird things that I don’t get enough of, like selenium, Vit B12, folate, iron, phosphorus, manganese, and zinc.  They are also high in bioavailable protein, low in fat, and high in omega-3s (compared to the amount of fat they have).

Mussels and spaghetti |
Those are ALL cookbooks in the background, by the way. And that’s not even half of what I own… so far.

Just look at it!  It’s what I’d expect to get if I had the time and money to go out to a fancy restaurant, but it was even better because I got to enjoy it with a handsome man, in my pajamas, surrounded by hockey games, pillows, and half-graded quizzes.  A pretty good night, I’d say.

Spaghetti and Mussels

Spaghetti and Mussels


  • 1 lb whole wheat spaghetti, reserve 1/2 cup pasta water
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 shallots, minced
  • 5 to 7 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 pounds mussels, cleaned
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, diced into small cubes
  • Salt and black pepper, to taste
  • 1 lemon, zested, for garnish


  1. Heat the olive oil in a large saute pan. Add shallots and garlic and saute until soft and slightly browned.
  2. Add the mussels and wine (carefully). Cover and simmer for 6 to 8 minutes or until most mussles have opened.
  3. Whisk in butter to thicken sauce slightly.
  4. Place pasta into the clam saute pan and mix thoroughly. Add reserved pasta water.
  5. Toss and top with zest and parmesan.

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