Black Bean Mussels in Japanese Beer


I usually simply wok fry black bean mussels. However, on an uneventful occasion while cooking the dish in the usual way, I happened to be sipping a cool variety of super dry Japanese beer. It seemed like the perfect match. The rest is history... and bitter-sweetly good.

Preparation: 5 minutes
Cooking time: 5 minutes


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed and finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
  • 1 red chili, seeded and chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fermented, salted black beans, washed and crushed
  • 2 lb mussels, washed and debearded
  • 2 cups Japanese beer
  • 3 tablespoons light soy sauce
  • 3 spring onions, chopped
  • handful of cilantro leaves, chopped


  1. Heat the wok over high heat and add the oil. Add the garlic, ginger, chilies and black beans and stir fry for less than 1 minute. Add the mussels and stir fry for less than 1 minute. Add the Japanese beer and cook until the mussels open, stirring occasionally. (Discard any that do not open.) Season with light soy sauce.
  2. Sprinkle in the spring onion and cilantro and serve immediately – try with the Smoked Paprika Sweet Potato Fries.