Chef Dawn Parks’ Tequila Steamed Mussels, Chorizo, Piquillo Sauce + Mexican Crema

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Recipe from chef Dawn Parks

St. Germain’s Café and Bistro

1010 S. Coast Highway 101, Ste. 103, Encinitas


St. Germain’s Bistro & Café was founded in 1976 and has been an icon in the Encinitas community for well over three decades. St. Germain’s Cafe built its reputation on its breakfast (served until 3 p.m. every day) and lunch menus, and launched its dinner services in 2012. Also this year, St. Germain’s debuted its quarterly Lady Chef Series featuring dinner menus from San Diego’s top female chefs. Throughout August, Dawn Parks, owner and executive chef of The Wild Thyme Company, Catering and Events, takes to the kitchen to collaborate with St. Germain’s executive chef Kaitlin Ramos.


Chef Dawn Parks of The Wild Thyme Company, Catering and Events came up with this summery dish, which sources local mussels from Carlsbad, during a family camping trip. Park’s favorite way to serve this flavorful recipe (which she’s playfully dubbed “mussel nachos”) is on a big platter in the middle of the table, with a crisp white wine or a margarita.


Chef Dawn Parks’ Tequila Steamed Mussels, Chorizo, Piquillo Sauce + Mexican Crema

Serves 4

4 pounds mussels
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 shallot, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
6 sprigs fresh thyme
2 links Spanish chorizo or Andouille sausage, small diced
¼ cup tequila reposado
1 cup white wine
1 cup chicken stock
2 tablespoons butter
¼ cup cilantro, chopped
Drizzle of Piquillo sauce (recipe follows)
Drizzle of Mexican crema, crème fraîche or sour cream
2 scallions, sliced, for topping

  • Rinse the mussels under cold running water while scrubbing with a vegetable brush. Discard any with broken shells and remove the beards. 
  • Heat oil in an 8-quart stockpot. Sauté the shallot, garlic, thyme and sausage to create a base flavor. 
  • Add the mussels and mix them well with the other ingredients. 
  • Add the tequila, wine and stock then cover the pot and steam over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes or until the mussels just open. Toss in the butter and cilantro.
  • Transfer to a deep bowl for serving. Drizzle with Piquillo sauce and Mexican crema. Top with scallions and serve with grilled bread or croutons.



Categories: Food & Drink