Fried Mussels with Ginger Miso Dipping Sauce

| February 21, 2011 | 1 Comment

There haven’t been many times that I’ve eaten something at a restaurant and been inspired to create my own version of it. The first time was in Fort Worth, Texas, and the restaurant was Celebration, which served a cucumber dressing that drove me to try for years to perfect a cucumber dressing of my own. 

The second time was in Baltimore, Maryland, at a restaurant called Atlantic, which served a divinely seared piece of tenderloin of ahi tuna coated with bacon that had been fried and ground up. After moving to Oregon, we discovered Oregon albacore tuna, and I perfected a bacon-crusted and seared albacore tuna with a pomegranate reduction sauce. 

The third was recently when I ate battered and fried mussels for the first time at Andaluz, a tapas restaurant right here in Salem. Chef David Rosales’ version had a light coat of flour and was served with a garlic aioli sauce. It was such a delicious way to enjoy mussels that I was inspired to create my own version. Preferring a more substantial batter, I played around until I came up with a recipe that was a combination of batter and breading and remained crispy-crunchy after frying, along with a more tangy, Japanese-inspired sauce based on miso. 

Fried mussels with ginger miso dipping sauce, a wonderful way to enjoy mussels.



Fried Mussels with Ginger Miso Dipping Sauce

This dish is simple to make and is a great appetizer. Think of them as mussel poppers! They’ll disappear in a flash. 


  1. 1 tablespoon (15 ml.) peeled and finely chopped ginger
  2. 1 tablespoon (15 ml.) miso
  3. 2 tablespoons (30 ml.) mirin
  4. 1 tablespoon(15 ml.) ponzu
  5. 1 teaspoon (5 ml.) sugar
  6. 1 teaspoon (5 ml.) toasted sesame oil
  7. 1 tablespoon (15 ml.) water
  8. Two dozen mussels, scrubbed, rinsed and de-bearded
  9. 1 cup (24o ml.) all-purpose white flour
  10. 2 cups (480 ml.) milk
  11. 4 cups (.95 l.) oil for frying
  12. 2 cups (480 ml.) seasoned Italian breadcrumbs


  • Make dipping sauce by pounding the chopped ginger in a mortar and pestle until pulverized and scoop into small bowl. Add miso, mirin, ponzu, sugar, sesame oil, water and thoroughly mix and set aside until ready to serve with mussels.
  • Steam mussels until they open. Turn off flame and remove the flesh of each mussel from its shell and set the mussel flesh aside in a small bowl.
  • Prepare batter by mixing together flour and milk.
  • Heat oil in small saucepan.
  • Working with one piece at a time, dredge mussels in the batter mix, roll them around in the breadcrumbs to coat them evenly, then deep fry until golden brown.
  • Serve mussels with dipping sauce.


— Vic


Category: Appetizers, Seafood

About the Author (Author Profile)

Victor Panichkul is a journalist and writer by training; a cook, wine lover and photographer by passion; and a lover of the outdoors since moving to Oregon more than 10 years ago. He is a native of Bangkok, Thailand.

Comments (1)

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  1. Irish says:

    Those mussels look fantastic.

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