in which I tell you what you want

This is what happens when you ask the internet what to have for dinner: Sometimes, the internet has a tie.

So I made the executive decision to go with the curry, because really, you can get mussels with wine and butter anywhere. And it was a simple enough original recipe, with the sort of cooking liquid that begs to be soaked up with rice. I made a few adjustments, but not enough to merit an entire “adapted” recipe—I made less food ‘cause it was just for the two of us, I added about half a tablespoon of minced lemongrass in addition to my green curry paste (recommended) and also shook in a touch of cayenne to kick up the heat (ymmv). I also squeezed in more lime juice than EDF suggests. I scooped a little bit of jasmine rice into the bottom of the bowls, just to add a little more substance to the meal. It was out of this world, and Myron is no longer anti-mussel. Success!

A brief but amazing storm hit just before dinner. The sky turned that wonderfully eerie shade of steel gray that says run for shelter, the electricity in the house flickered, and I hoped the stove would stay on long enough to cook the mussels the whole way through. Ottawa seems to have a talent for nice, long power outages and I’ve been anticipating this dinner since last week. But everything held, everything worked… and people, I really can’t even believe that I got this shot. It’s the only one I took that looked remotely like the meal itself. It doesn’t capture the silky texture of the broth or its perfect color, but damn if I care. Trust me, if you like mussels, Thai curry, and coconut milk, you want this. You want a careful portion of it ‘cause coconut milk’s sat fat is prodigious, but I promise, you want it. You want it with a scoop of jasmine rice in the bottom of your bowl, and you want a piece of your favorite bread at the ready to swipe up what’s left. You want the freshest cilantro you can get your hands on, and you want as much lime juice as it takes to make you happy. Keep wedges at the table, just in case. And oh, it goes without saying that you want someone at the table with you who’ll appreciate every mouthful, someone who isn’t too dainty to toss shells into a bowl between the two of you. This someone must be equally at home with conventional dinner conversation, companionable silence, and groans of gustatory pleasure.