Okay, so maybe you don’t live across the street from a blooming locust tree—you can still make a killer butter sauce.
- ½ medium onion, chopped
- 1 small carrot, peeled, chopped
- ½ cup dry white wine
- 1 pound mussels, debearded, scrubbed
- 2 bunches asparagus (about 1½ lb.), trimmed, stalks peeled
- Kosher salt
- ¾ cup (1½ sticks) chilled unsalted butter, cut into pieces
- 1 tablespoon Sherry vinegar
- 1 cup locust flowers (optional)
Bring onion, carrot, and wine to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add mussels and return to a boil. Remove from heat, cover, and let sit 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, cook asparagus in a large pot of boiling salted water until bright green and crisp-tender, about 5 minutes. Using tongs, transfer to a bowl of ice water. Let cool, then drain and set aside. Reserve pot with water.
Strain mussel mixture through a sieve into another medium saucepan (you should have about ½ cup). Discard (or eat!) mussels and vegetables. Bring cooking liquid to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer until reduced to ¼ cup.
Whisking constantly, add butter, a piece at a time, incorporating before adding the next piece. Whisk until sauce is emulsified. Whisk in vinegar; season with salt.
Just before serving, warm asparagus in reserved pot of hot water. Drain, pat dry, and transfer to a platter. Gently mix locust flowers, if using, into sauce and spoon over asparagus.
- 4 5x3x1/2-inch slices country-style bread, crusts removed, bread cut into 3/4-inch cubes
- 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3/4 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh chives
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh tarragon
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh chervil (optional)
- 2/3 cup crème fraîche
- 3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon whole grain brown mustard or whole grain Dijon mustard
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 4 large garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme
- 5 pounds mussels, scrubbed, debearded
- 3 cups diced seeded tomatoes (about 4 large)
- 1 cup chopped green onions (about 4)
- 1 12-ounce bottle Belgian white beer (such as Hoegaarden)
Preheat oven to 375°F. Combine bread cubes, Parmesan, and oil in medium bowl; sprinkle with salt and toss to coat. Spread bread cubes evenly on rimmed baking sheet. Bake until bread cubes are crisp and golden around edges, about 15 minutes. Remove from oven and cool.
Mix parsley, chives, tarragon, and chervil, if desired, in small bowl. Whisk crème fraîche and both mustards in another small bowl to blend; set aside.
Melt butter in extra-large pot with lid over high heat. Add garlic and thyme; stir 1 minute. Add mussels, tomatoes, and green onions. Pour beer over, then add crème fraîche mixture; sprinkle with freshly ground black pepper. Cover tightly with lid and cook until steam appears, about 3 minutes. Add half of fresh herb mixture and stir until mussels and herbs are gently mixed. Cover tightly with lid again and cook until mussels open, 4 to 5 minutes (discard any mussels that do not open).
Using slotted spoon, divide mussels among 6 bowls. Season mussel juices lightly with salt and pepper, then pour juices over each serving. Sprinkle each serving with Parmesan croutons and remaining herb mixture and serve.
Recipe by Mathieu Palombino
Duck Breast With Mustard Greens, Turnips, And Radishes
Don’t fear the fat; most of it will render, leaving a deliciously crisp browned layer on top.
- 3 pounds boneless duck breasts (3–4)
- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- ¼ cup Dijon mustard
- 2 tablespoons English mustard powder
- 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 5 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 4 radishes, thinly sliced
- 4 small turnips, scrubbed, thinly sliced, plus 2 cups torn turnip greens or kale
- 6 cups torn mustard greens; plus any mustard flowers (optional)
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
- Flaky sea salt
Preheat oven to 400°. Score fat side of duck breasts ⅛” deep in a crosshatch pattern; season both sides with kosher salt and pepper. Heat 1 Tbsp. vegetable oil in a large ovenproof skillet, preferably cast iron, over medium. Cook 2 duck breasts, skin side down, until fat is rendered and surface is deeply browned and crisp, 10–15 minutes; transfer to a plate. Wipe out skillet and repeat with remaining duck and 1 Tbsp. vegetable oil.
Arrange all duck breasts in skillet, fat side up, and roast in oven until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center of breasts registers 135°, 5–8 minutes. Transfer to a cutting board and let rest at least 5 minutes and up to 2 hours.
Whisk Dijon mustard, mustard powder, lemon juice, and 3 Tbsp. olive oil in a small bowl; season mustard sauce with kosher salt and pepper.
Toss radishes, turnips, greens, flowers (if using), vinegar, and remaining 2 Tbsp. olive oil in a large bowl; season with kosher salt and pepper.
Thinly slice duck. Scatter greens over a platter (or two) and top with duck. Sprinkle with sea salt and serve with mustard sauce alongside.
- Recipe by Alison Roman
- Photograph by Christopher Testani