These Spicy Keto Chilli Mussels are super easy to make and go great with a crusty loaf of Keto Focaccia.
I firmly believe there are few meals as delightful as ones made with fresh seafood. I also firmly believe there are few meals as dreadful as those made with bad seafood. If Sir Issac Newton had been a chef, his 3rd law may have sounded a little more like this, “for every great seafood dish there is an equally opposite gross seafood dish”. These Keto Chilli Mussels were the former, but if you eat enough seafood you are bound to experience both.
My most memorable experience with truly disgusting seafood occurred a few years ago. Lauren and I had made plans for a romantic weekend trip to Hilton Head, South Carolina for our wedding anniversary. We had the perfect weekend planned, our campsite was literally only feet away from the ocean. We had packed our large Dutch oven along in order to prepare a massive, and hopefully delicious, seafood boil.
About 20 minutes before we were slated to arrive we stopped at a roadside stand selling “Fresh Caught seafood”, and I packed our haul of shrimp, crab, and oysters into the cooler in the back seat. This is when it all starts going downhill.
An Atlantic hurricane was bearing down on the South Carolina shoreline and we were urged to evacuate. Not wanting to end up as a cautionary take on the news, we headed inland and started messaging Airbnb hosts. We spent a total of 3 hours searching and finally driving to one that had a vacancy and was far enough away from the path at the storm. I’m not sure if the cooler completely failed at keeping the seafood cold or if it was bad to begin with but as I opened it up in the Airbnb’s kitchen the smell was nauseating and reminded me of a bait shop in July.
We rinsed everything off and the smell died down, or maybe we just got used to it. Anyway, we moved everything to the Dutch oven and added the rest of the ingredients for our feast. After sitting atop the world’s least effective stove for two hours we ladled out the deliciousness, we were starving by this point (all we had had since lunch was a bottle of champagne). The first bite was unpleasant, to say the least, then I bit into a shrimp and newly gagged. It was disgusting, and to top it at off that was the night our pet sitter called and quit because our epileptic cat was too hateful and she couldn’t wrangler her without being clawed to give her medicine. Finally we went up to our room with a bottle of wine (each) and called it a night. What an anniversary to remember, ha!
Oh how I wish we had these mussels that night, the spiciness of the peppers paired so perfectly with the brininess of the mussels. It actually took me a while to get up the nerve to eat seafood again after that meal, so if you are recovering from a bad experience with seafood, this could be the perfect recipe to get back on the saddle. Just be sure to buy yours from a reputable source, and always prioritize freshness.
Mussels are a nutritional powerhouse so I’ve linked to a few articles breaking down the excellent health benefits linked to consuming mussels.
- Livestrong – Are Mussels Healthy?
- Health Fitness Revolution – Top 10 Benefits of Mussels
- Healthy Eating SF Gate – What are the Benefits of Mussels
- 2 tablespoons avocado oil
- 1/2 onion minced
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- 2 red chiles minced
- 1 Roma tomato diced
- 1/2 cup broth or white wine
- 1 lime juiced
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1.5 lbs mussels cleaned
- 2 tablespoons cilantro minced
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Heat the oil in a large skillet or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Saute the onion, garlic, and chili for 3 minutes.
- Add in the diced tomato, broth or wine, butter, and lime and cook another 3 minutes.
- Add in the cleaned mussels, cover 3 minutes, or until the mussels have opened. Discard any mussels that didn’t open and top with cilantro. Serve immediately.