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Mussel and Sea Bean Salad
© Maura McEvoy

Mussel and Sea Bean Salad

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Sea beans, also known as marsh samphire and glasswort, grow in the shallow waters along the Pacific and Atlantic coasts. They have crisp, spiky cactus-like leaves and stems and a briny taste.

  1. 1 cup dry white wine
  2. 1 cup water
  3. 4 garlic cloves, 3 smashed, 1 minced
  4. 2 tablespoons minced celery
  5. 2 tablespoons minced red bell pepper
  6. 1 small onion, thinly sliced
  7. 1 bay leaf
  8. 2 pounds mussels, scrubbed and debearded
  9. 1/2 pound sea beans (see Note), soaked in cool water for 30 minutes and drained, or thin green beans
  10. 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  11. 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  12. 2 teaspoons minced tarragon
  13. 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  14. Salt and freshly ground pepper
  15. 2 cups shredded romaine lettuce
  1. In a medium saucepan, combine the wine, water, smashed garlic, celery, red bell pepper, onion and bay leaf and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for 3 minutes. Add the mussels, cover and cook over high heat for 3 to 5 minutes; remove the mussels to a bowl as they open. Strain the cooking liquid and return it to the pan. Remove the mussels from their shells and transfer to a bowl.
  2. If using green beans, blanch them in the reserved mussel cooking liquid until bright green and tender, about 2 minutes. Remove the beans with a slotted spoon, pat dry and let cool completely. Cut the beans into 1 1/2-inch lengths.
  3. In a bowl, whisk the oil with the vinegar, tarragon, mustard and minced garlic. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Add the sea beans or green beans to the mussels and toss with 3 tablespoons of the vinaigrette. Season with salt and pepper. Toss the romaine with the remaining vinaigrette; mound on plates, top with the mussel salad and serve.
Notes Sea beans are available at Melissa's Specialty Produce, melissas.com