This Cheesy Baked Mussels or Baked Tahong as we call it in the Philippines are perfect appetizers and it is so easy to prepare too. The combination of butter, garlic and cheese added to the mussels just makes this dish simply delightful.
I remember when my siblings and I were growing up, we were not so much into eating fish or seafood, all we wanted was fried chicken or pork chops! How things have changed.
Now I am happy when I can get to eat fish. I think that is one of the things I miss the most about living in the Philippines, where seafood are abundant.
Of course, we do have some seafood in Germany, but the choices are a bit limited and let us not start with the price! I have yet to see fresh fish or seafood in our area, they are usually frozen.
But luckily, I am able to get mussels here. Although they are not as fresh as we get them in the Phils, and by fresh I mean you get them alive until you cook them, but it'll make do.
I was craving for seafood last weekend and this is the easiest way I can think of to satisfy my yearning. Back then I used to make this for special occasions like holidays, birthdays, fiestas or when we are having get-together or reunions.
It is a dish that is well-loved, as I said, getting hold of fresh mussels is not difficult in the Philippines as they are almost always available all year round and you can get them really cheap but I assure you, there is nothing cheap with how these cheesy baked mussels taste.
Cheesy Baked Mussels
- 2 pounds mussels
- 1 head garlic - minced
- ¾ cup unsalted butter
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 3 tablespoons bread crumbs
- quick melting grated cheese
- If using fresh mussels, remove the beard or byssus thread and wash them. Steam mussels by placing them in a pan without water and cover and cook over medium-low heat just until the shells open up. Let it cool down a bit and remove the other half of the shells.
- In a small saucepan, melt butter then add the salt and garlic. Cook until tender. remove from heat and mix in the breadcrumbs.
- Top each mussel with the butter-garlic mix using a teaspoon. Add grated cheese on top. While doing this, preheat oven to 355°F/180°C. Line your baking tray with parchment paper or aluminum foil and arrange the mussels on top.
- Bake for 10-15 minutes or until cheese has melted and a bit browned.