moules mariniere

I have a love-hate relationship with my induction stove. Have these caught on in the US? I discovered them first in Germany, but that may have had more to do with the timing of my transatlantic move than anything else.

In any case, when I first moved over here and started apartment hunting with my future husband, we sat down and made a list of must-have and nice-to-have features for our future home. I had a gas stove (or at least a hookup for one) on my Must-Have list. My husband took one look at my list and told me that it wasn’t going to happen. Actually, he took the axe to most of of the items my list. I seem to recall that air conditioning was similarly struck down. And thank goodness, because if he hadn’t adjusted my expectations we would still be looking for an apartment 7 years later. Finding an apartment in Frankfurt is no easy task. Finding one with a gas stove and air conditioning would be a miracle. We don’t have a single friend who has either.

So, no gas stove. What to do? Plan A was to keep the kitchen well stocked with alcohol and drink away my sorrows at having to cook on the hated electric. My husband took a more pragmatic approach and introduced me to the concept of induction stoves.

I won’t bore you with the science of how induction works, but the benefit over electric is that it heats up and cools down very quickly. Which I love. What I do not love is how sensitive the damn thing is. Cleaning it with a damp spong sends it into a fit of error messages. And every once in a while, not often enough to keep me vigilant, but just often enough to keep my loyalties with gas, the thing will just turn itself off. No warning messages, no alarms, just off.

All of which is a very long introduction to this week’s French Fridays with Dorie recipe, Moules Mariniere. I LOVE mussels and moules mariniere is THE classic recipe. I have made this recipe more times than I can count. My standard is from Anthony Bourdain, but really, one recipe for moules is usually much like another.

I prepped my mussels, sauteed some savories, threw the mussels into the pot, clamped down the lid, and turned my back to slice up some bread. Mussels cook very quickly and so I didn’t go far. I even turned around at some point to give the pot a good shake. I’m not even sure exactly when the stove decided to turn itself off. All I know is that when the timer went off and I opened the lid to check on them, most had only partially opened. At this point I noticed that my heat had gone out, so I turned it back on and tried again. But apparently it was too late and they didn’t open any further:-(

The ones which open were tasty and I’ve learned my lesson not to turn my back on mussels. I’m sure I’ll eat these again soon. But I didn’t love the lemon so I’ll probably be going back to Anthony.

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17 Responses to moules mariniere

  1. Nana says:

    How frustrating that must be to have a stove turn off like that. Thankfully your were able to
    salvage a few mussels and enjoyed those. I played catch up this week simply because
    hubby is not a fan of mussels. Have a great weekend.

  2. dulceshome says:

    What a sad story! I was pleased that the man who wrapped up my mussels chose them one-by-one, so all (!) opened. Silly me, I didn’t really clean them when I got home, but they were still delicious!! I will have to look up Anthony’s recipe. I did the ultra basic version.

  3. I’m so sorry about your mussels, Rose. I’ve not heard of an induction stove. Sounds like it would be quite frustrating! I am not a fan of mussels but my husband loves them, so this was his week!
    Really nice photo! Have a great weekend!

  4. Cher says:

    How very frustrating.
    Oh, that would drive me nuts! I had an electric stove in my apartment before I bought my house and I hated it. I had more than one temper tantrum over that stupid stove.

    Glad you enjoyed the ones that worked 🙂

  5. Trevor says:

    How sad. I can’t imagine life without a gas stove! yikes. I too will look up Bourdain’s recipe as that man is so good with dishes like this at getting their ‘essence’.

  6. Ouch, that is not fun. Quite frustrating actually. I know à lot of peiple with induction stove that haven’t got similar problems. Maybe time for à replacement? Glad you could eat Some of them. Have à Nice weekend!

  7. Rose, despite the missing heat, your moules marinières look wonderful and delicious and there is nothing better than serving some fresh bread alongside to mop up that broth (with or without lemon).
    Have a nice weekend!

  8. I recently had the chance to get a new oven and had the choice between electric and induction and I agonized over the decision but in the end decided to go regular electric cooktop since I felt the induction isn’t quite ready for the home kitchen and more importantly, I am not ready to change the way I cook so dramatically – with these mussels, I gave my pan a good shake a few times which I would not have been able to do with induction. My story this week was that even though these were open after 3 minutes, they were not really cooked so I had to put them back for a few minutes which fortunately worked. Glad you were able to salvage a few!

  9. Evil oven… sorry about the mussels. I have my favorite mussel recipe too with Chimay.. sounds like Anthony’s is the way to go… good you tried the other.

  10. Cakelaw says:

    Your stove would drive me crazy – I have enough issues with my ancient gas one. Glad you liked the mussels – I enjoyed them for a change too.

  11. Wow. That induction stove sounds insanely finnicky. Glad you were able to make these, though!

  12. Mary Hirsch says:

    Hey, Germany, welcome to my Life in the United States. I am used to cooking with gas. I love to cook with gas. There’s no other way to cook then with gas. However, when I returned to Aspen to live in my condo at The Gant, gas is a no, no and not ever. A 144-unit complex in downtown Aspen, gas is not going to happen. One crazy cook could burn the wooden complex down. I have state-of-the art induction and, yes, it is insanely finicky. I’ve had it turn off also. It will not turn back on. I’ve also had all the red lights on every burner go crazy. That’s why my 3 1/2 months is California is heaven-sent. It’s not only warm here but I have a GAS STOVE. Loved the mussels!!!

  13. Christy says:

    That would be so frustrating. Fortunately we have an older home fully equipped with gas and not an induction stove. I’ve wondered what they were like, thanks for sharing the experience. The mussels look great.

  14. betsy says:

    It’s not fair when the kitchen appliances are against you. Glad these worked out in the end though. We went to brunch today and sat at the “chef’s dining counter” with a full view of the kitchen. They were cooking over induction. I wonder whether those burners ever thwart the restaurant chefs.

  15. Sorry about the mishap with your stove. I agree with you a gas stove is the only way to go.

  16. Ugh, I cannot stand unreliable appliances…my oven it temperamental and it drives me crazy! Now I’m going to have to check out Anthony’s recipe.

  17. Renee Iseson says:

    That’s too bad. Sorry to hear you had trouble with your induction cooktop. I had no idea they were so finicky! Good to keep in mind when shopping for a new range. I didn’t use the lemon thinking it was not a flavor I’d want. I will have to check out Anthony’s recipe. Thanks for sharing that!

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