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Mussels are an excellent fast, healthy dinner. Look for them on ice in mesh bags at your fish counter; the individual mollusks should be mostly closed, or they should close when tapped. The only other thing you need with this aromatic dinner? A couple of crunchy rolls that just might happen to fall into the sauce.
EatingWell Healthy in a Hurry Cookbook

Total time: 45 minutes
Makes 4 servings

• 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
• 1 large onion, finely diced
• 1 bunch  leeks, white and pale green parts only, sliced and washed
• 4 cloves garlic, crushed and peeled
• 1/4 teaspoon salt
• 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
• 1 cup white wine
• 1/4 cup bottled clam juice
• 1/2 teaspoon saffron
• 3 pounds  mussels, cleaned (see Tip)
• 1/2 cup coarsely chopped fresh parsley

Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion, leeks, garlic, salt and pepper and cook, stirring often, until the onion and leeks are softened and just starting to brown, 4 to 6 minutes. Add wine, clam juice and saffron, increase heat to high and bring to a boil. Stir in mussels. Reduce heat to a simmer. Cover and steam until all the mussels have opened, 4 to 5 minutes. (Discard any unopened mussels.) Stir in parsley.

Kitchen tip: To clean mussels, scrub them with a stiff brush under cold running water. Scrape off any barnacles using the shell of another mussel. Just before cooking, pull off the fuzzy "beard" from each one (some mussels may not have a beard). Discard any mussels with broken shells or any that do not close when  tapped.

Per Serving: 350 calories; 12 g fat (2 g sat, 7 g mono); 64 mg cholesterol; 21 g carbohydrate; 29 g protein; 2 g fiber; 652 mg sodium.
Nutrition Bonus: Selenium (147% daily value). Iron (50% dv). Vitamin C (50% dv), Folate (32% dv). Zinc (22% dv), Vitamin A (20% dv).


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