Ale Steamed Mussels & Potato Salad with Beer Dressing

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Ale-Steamed Mussels With Garlic and Mustard
2 pounds mussels in shells
1 tablespoon olive oil
4 full sprigs of thyme
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 large shallots, chopped
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
3/4 cup good ale
1 to 3 tablespoons butter, to taste
1 tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon or parsley
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
Crusty bread, for serving.
1. Rinse mussels under cold running water. If you see hairy clumps around the shell (called beards), use a sharp knife or your fingers to pull them off, then scrub shells well with a vegetable brush.
2. In a soup pot with a tight-fitting cover, heat olive oil, then add thyme, garlic, shallots and a pinch of salt and pepper. Sauté until shallots and garlic are softened, 3 minutes. Pour in ale and bring to a simmer. Add mussels and cover pot. Let mussels steam, stirring once or twice, until they open, 5 to 10 minutes. Use a slotted spoon to transfer mussels to bowls. Discard any that have not opened.
3. Add butter, herbs and mustard to pan juices and bring to a boil. Whisk until butter melts, then taste and correct seasonings (add more butter if liquid tastes bitter). Pour over mussels and serve with bread for sopping up juices.

Warm Potato Salad with Beer Dressing Recipe
Recipe Type: Salad and Salad Dressing, Potatoes, Eggs

6 (2 pounds) medium potatoes*
4 bacon strips
2 tablespoons finely-chopped onion
3/4 cup finely chopped celery
2 teaspoons salt or to taste
Beer Dressing (see recipe below)
3 hard-cooked eggs, chopped
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley, for garnish

In a large pan over medium-high heat, add potatoes and cover with cold water; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, approximately 12 to 15 minutes or until just tender. Remove from heat and drain. NOTE: I usually remove the skins when the potatoes have cooled enough to hold. As soon as you can handle the potatoes, cut the warm potatoes into bite-sized chunks and place in alarge mixing bowl.
Fry bacon in a skillet over medium heat until crisp. Remove the bacon and drain on paper towels. Crumble bacon and mix with onion, celery, and salt in a small bowl; set aside.
Prepare Beer Dressing. Pour the warm Beer Dressing over the potatoes and mix gently. Add the hard-cooked eggs and bacon mixture; mix gently again. Sprinkle parsley over the top.
This salad may be served warm or at room temperature.

Beer Dressing:
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 cup beer (your favorite brand-my beer is best)*
1/2 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
* Use pale lager-type beer when preparing the salad, as a darker beer will discolor the potatoes.
Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the flour and stir until blended. Add the mustard and sugar. Slowly stir in the beer and Tabasco sauce. Raise the heat to medium and bring the mixture just to a boil, stirring constantly. Remove from heat.