Try this for an easy light dinner. Mussels, like crabs, only net about 1/4 pound of "meat" per pound of whole shellfish. A couple pounds of mussels could run $10 at the fish market. If you do the math, the protein is much more expensive than other sources --- but the mussels are really just a condiment in this salad. You don't need to eat a whole bunch of them. And they are delicious.
2 pounds mussels, debearded just before cooking
6 oz of baby spinach leaves
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2-3 teaspoons chopped fresh ginger (you can peel it with the edge of a bowl of a spoon then chop or simply use large holes on a box grater without peeling it. The skin sort of magically folds back)
2-3 teaspoons chopped garlic
Large pinch crushed red chili flakes (two fingers and thumb's worth)
Salt and freshly ground pepper
In a salad bowl, toss the spinach with the lemon juice, and season with salt and pepper.
Steam the mussels in a large covered stock pot until they open --- just a few minutes. I used a little dry white wine instead of water. After they are cool enough to handle, remove the mussels from their shells.
Gently warm the olive oil in a small skillet.
Add the mussels, ginger, garlic and chilies. Saute until heated --- just a minute or two.
Add this to the spinach. It will wilt a little.
Adjust seasoning and serve warm with a crusty bread and beverage of choice.