Mussels are bivalve mollusks with bluish black shells and soft orange-colored flesh that is eaten raw or cooked. They are available fresh from well-stocked food stores and fish markets.
To scrub and debeard mussels:
Rinse the mussels thoroughly under cold running water. Scrub each shell with a firm-bristled brush to remove dirt. Grasp the fibrous beard and pull it off. Discard any mussels whose shells are not tightly closed.For other shellfish varieties, see clams, crabs, lobster, oysters, scallops, and shrimp.