Buttered Mussels & Herbs

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I cooked mussels with lemon few weeks ago – reminiscent of quilo babi, enjoyed it very much, but still didn’t get over my sinful cravings for baked tahong. Then I accidentally googled this recipe on baked tahong without an oven and it reminded me of how my cousin did it 2 Christmases ago back in Manila. And so I came up with this tasty buttered tahong mixed with Parmesan Cheese and Italian herbs very much similar to Edwin‘s cooking suggestions.

Frozen mussels
5 to 6 tbsp of finely chopped garlic
Parmesan Cheese
A dash of mixed Italian dried herbs – marjoram, basil, red bell pepper, rosemary, oregano, parsley & thyme

Melt butter in a non-stick pan over low fire. Stir in the garlic until slightly browned and aromatic. Throw in the mussels and fry for about 2 minutes with continuous stirring, adding more butter when necessary. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and Italian herbs. Continue stirring for another couple of minutes until the mussels absorbs the flavor of mixed butter, cheese and herbs.

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I am not a professional cook. My only claim to having a culinary background is a short stint as my dad’s teen ‘sous chef’ in his carinderia ages ago. Dad ran small eateries since I was a young kid - serving standard ‘turo-turo’ food ranging from the likes of menudo, adobo, pritong isda, dinuguan, binagoongan, bopis, munggo, pinakbet and giniling to merienda fares like goto, ginataan, pancit bihon, halu-halo and saging con yelo.

My father, a farmer in his hometown before working his way to becoming an accountant, definitely influenced my cooking in a lot of ways than I thought. My siblings and I were raised in a backyard full of fruit trees and vegetable garden. We spent weekends and the summer breaks running around with ducks, chickens, goats and pigs. I had wonderful memories of gathering eggs, butchering chickens, selling vegetables and the sweet aroma of preserved fruits. But my love for art led me to a degree in Architecture. Just few months after getting my license, I went abroad and lived independently at age 23. Definitely no maid, no cook, and a totally different food culture. Along the way I met lots of friends and spent what seemed a lifetime learning new tricks and recipes.

Now living in Auckland, I am a work-from-home mum who juggles time between work, fun and family - in pursuit of work-life balance. No matter how busy I am, I love the idea of cooking for my family. My blog chronicles home cooking greatly influenced by life outside my home country from Southeast Asia to Beijing and Auckland. And most of the time, being busy also means easy (sometimes quick), affordable meals.

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