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Guest Post: Mussels with Cider Sauce, by Nicola Strawbridge



The autumn issue of the Irish Independent LoveFood magazine is out with the paper today. Chef Nicola Strawbridge has given us one of six wonderful autumn recipes – all a cinch to prepare with six ingredients or fewer.

Inside the magazine, you’ll also find seasonal recipes, tips on great value Australian wine, alternatives for healthy kids’ lunchboxes, advice on preparing yourself for the cold and flu season (with food as your armour) – and more.

Mussels with Cider Sauce

Mussels are amazing at this time of year – plump, orangey and begging to be steamed in a rich garlicky sauce. Try this slight variation on moules mariniere, made with dry cider.
Serves 2.


  • 2kg mussels
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 50g butter
  • 2-3 shallots
  • 300ml of dry cider
  • A good handful of chopped parsley


  • Wash the mussels thoroughly, scraping off barnacles and removing beards. Throw away any cracked mussels, and any that stay open (when cooked, throw away any that remain closed).
  • In a large pot, melt the butter on a medium heat and add the finely diced shallot and garlic along with half the parsley. Cook without colouring for a minute or two before adding the cider and simmering for a minute longer.
  • Turn the heat up, throw in the mussels and put the lid on the pot. Leave for three to five minutes, shaking occasionally.
  • Check the pot and remove the mussels, placing in a warmed serving dish. Give the sauce a minute or two longer to reduce, then pour over the waiting mussels – be careful as there may be some grit at the bottom of the pot.
  • Sprinkle with the remaining parsley and serve immediately, with a baguette to tear up and dip in the sauce, and some extra bowls for the shells.

Tip: To make the sauce richer, add a tablespoon or two of double cream at the end.


  1. Oh jesus this is making my mouth water.

  2. never had mussels before, cant wait to try this 🙂

  3. Imagine that you could travel back in time to see Jacqueline Kennedy at different stages of her life. ,