YOU WILL NEED:  (serves 2)
-1 lbs mussels, washed
-a can of your favorite beer
-2/3 cup whipping cream
-4 slices of bacon, chopped
-1 small onion, chopped
-3 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
-1 jalapeno pepper, chopped 
-1 cup cherry tomatoes, quartered
-1/2 cup whipping cream
-1 1/2 cups cheddar cheese, grated

Note: you can use more or less jalapeno peppers depending on what level of spiciness you prefer. All of the vegetable amounts are approximate so feel free to use more or less as you please.

First start off by preparing the mussels by washing them, discarding any open or broken ones, and de-bearding them. (If you are unsure of how to do this properly, take a peek at this helpful video tutorial here.) Next, chop the bacon into pieces and cook it in a large stock pot or dutch oven, stirring occasionally until the bacon is nicely browned. Then drain the majority of the bacon fat and remove the bacon, placing it in a bowl to use later.

Return the pot to the heat and add the onion and garlic and saute until the onions start to caramelize and the garlic becomes aromatic. Then pour in the beer and add the bacon and chopped jalapenos. Also add a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Once the beer heats up and starts to lightly bubble then you can dump in the mussels and put a lid on the pot to let the mussels steam. They usually only take about 5-7 minutes to cook, but it is easy to tell when they are done because the shells open up. There are usually a few that don't open, so just discard those ones and don't eat them!

Finish the dish by tossing in the cherry tomatoes and adding the whipping cream. Slowly stir in the grated cheese until it just starts to melt. Scoop the mussels out into bowls and pour plenty of broth over top. Serve with toasted french bread to dip into the broth and a big empty bowl in the middle of the table to discard shells.

This is one of my all-time favorite meals so I hope you enjoy it too!
XO, Stef

recipe adapted from one that I found here.


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