Battered Mussels with Tarator Sauce

Preparation info

  • Serves


    as a starter
    • Difficulty


Appears in

A World in My Kitchen

A World in My Kitchen

By Peter Gordon

Published 2003

  • About

The two most common ways you’ll see mussels served in Istanbul are stuffed in the shell with rice, or served just like this. Tarator is one of Turkey’s great sauces, sometimes made with hazelnuts, pistachios or pinenuts. Ideally you should use mussels that haven’t been cooked, just shelled like you would an oyster. But you can use cooked mussels if necessary.


  • 200 g flour
  • 1 teaspoon kirmizi biber or chilli flakes
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 230 ml (7 ½ fl oz) beer, at room temperature
  • oil for deep frying
  • 30-40 fresh mussels, shelled
  • extra flour for dusting mussels


    Sift flour, kirmizi biber, salt, sugar and baking powder into a bowl. Slowly whisk in beer making sure there are no lumps. Stand 10 minutes. Heat cooking oil in a deep saucepan. Lightly dust mussels with a little flour, then tip them into the batter. Carefully drop into hot oil, one by one, and cook until the batter is golden (it may be best to cook them in several batches). Drain on kitchen paper. Serve with the sauce and a lemon wedge.