How to make Chinese style Spicy Mussel Fry?

Spicy Mussel Fry (Chinese Style) |How to make

What is Spicy Mussel Fry?

How does one make it Chinese style?

Spicy Mussel fry (Chinese Style) : An aromatic and spicy seafood preparation made with mussels and the well known 5 spice powder of China, to bring home the salty flavors of the sea and to wake up the yin yang energy of the sleeping dragon in you. Try this recipe ,out today!

How to make Chinese Spicy Mussel Fry ?

The backstory

It was a loud call for the Yin and Yang balance in the body, this weekend, that motivated me to pick up that Chinese Five spice powder, that has been hiding in my pantry, stored away safely for rainy days since a month ago.What better day than today, I thought, it’s been raining all week, with the clouds hanging low, one’s spirits needed a lift from the dull gloomy mood it has settled in this whole week.Wake up the Dragon energy  within, I told myself as I picked up my magic wand in the kitchen, with no particular menu in mind, yet the only thing I knew was that I needed something spicy for certain, something to get my yang energy up and moving!

“Trust your gut instinct” say the enlightened, often….so yesterday, on my way back home, when my car pulled over instinctively at the Korean Market, I knew that feeling….FISH was on the cards !

Soaking my eyes, in the rows of freshly caught fish….


……the lobsters and crabs that seemed to race each other in the live tanks….


…..the frozen fish aisle …



……I slowly picked a few that played  delicious mind games with me, floating in a spicy curry cooked in an earthen pot, ready to be savored. This morning as I fiddled with the idea of fixing a quick brunch between my endless laundry, my creative juices kicked in…..with single minded focus, I picked up that pack of frozen short necked clam meat I had bought and went to work with it.Slowly the thought of making the Chinese style Spicy Mussel Fry started coloring my imagination for me.


If you are wanting to learn more about the Indian spices that go well with seafood and how to use them in your delicious cooking, you can find all about it in my E-book, “A Complete Beginner’s guide to Indian Spices” by clicking here or on the picture below.

What is Chinese 5 Spice Powder ?

Last month I had picked up this amazing Five Spice powder at a local market that sells  goods from all over the world.Having heard a lot about it, yet never once tasting it before, I was curious and excited to try this “wonder powder “ as the Chinese call it. Though it is widely known in the west as the main seasoning ingredient for the dish Char Siu ( Chinese barbecued pork), I decided to try my hand with clam meat and this  newly acquired Chinese Five spice powder of mine.

The ingredients in the 5 spice powder

While it’s commonly believed that it gets its name because it contains 5 spices, the number actually refers to the 5 elements: wood, fire, earth, metal, and water. In traditional Chinese medicine, these elements manifest themselves in various parts of the human anatomy and imbalances in these elements are said to be the cause of disease. Various herbs and spices have been used for thousands of years to restore balance to these elements which is how 5 spice powder came into being.  What better day to balance the elements in one’s body I thought, than a rainy cold morning ?

The five spice powder  supposedly, incorporates all five taste elements:  Sweet, sour, bitter, pungent, and salty, and is based on the Chinese philosophy of balancing the yin and yang in food. The main ingredients are ground cinnamon, ground cloves, star anise ,fennel seeds and Szechuan peppercorns which gives it that citrusy pungent flavor.

When Chin-min meets Tambaram

The Chinese styled Spicy Mussel fry paired with the South Indian dish of Lemon Rice, set the tone for the day, I decided and set about making each dish side by side on my oven top.Both dishes were done in a matter of 20 minutes and brunch was served and ….they lived happily ever after 🙂

Spicy Mussel Fry (Chinese Style) |How to make

Spicy Mussel Fry (Chinese Style) |How to make

Recipe by Maya Shetty
Course: FOOD, MUSSELS, SEA FOOD -DRY PREPARATION, SEA FOOD DISHES, SEAFOODCuisine: Chinese, Fusion Dish, Indian, Indo- Chinese Dish
0.0 from 0 votes


Prep time


Cooking time




Total time




  • 20 -30 Frozen short neck clam meat

  • 1 tbsp Coconut Oil ( Peanut oil taste better, but I used coconut oil)

  • 1 medium Onion- finely sliced ( 1 medium)

  • Bell pepper – Red & Green ( to add to the visual effects & taste)

  • 1 tbsp Five Spice powder

  • 1/2 tsp Turmeric powder

  • 1 tbsp Rice Vinegar

  • 1 tbsp Soy sauce

  • 1 tbsp Sriracha sauce (or 2 depending on your spice threshold)

  • To taste Salt


  • Wash the frozen clam meat (or fresh) under running water, rub salt , turmeric powder & five spice powder & set aside to marinate.
  • Next in a wok, warm a little oil, add the finely sliced onions and saute till golden brown, next add the bell peppers & saute till they soften.
  • To this add the marinated clam, along with rice vinegar, Sriracha sauce & soy sauce and stir well adding a little salt to taste.
  • Keep the lid covered while stirring occasionally, for next 10 -15 minutes.
  • Do not over cook as the calm meat becomes rubbery if over cooked.
  • Serve with Lemon rice or as a side dish for flat breads.Enjoy!
  • Guaranteed you will never complain about the cold rain outdoors again 🙂

Nutrition Facts

4 servings per container

  • Amount Per ServingCalories160
  • % Daily Value *
  • Total Fat 15g 24%
    • Saturated Fat 12g 60%
  • Sodium 1351mg 57%
  • Potassium 139mg 4%
  • Total Carbohydrate 5g 2%
    • Dietary Fiber 1g 4%
    • Sugars 1g
  • Protein 3g 6%

  • Vitamin C 13%
  • Calcium 5%
  • Iron 17%

* The % Daily Value tells you how much a nutrient in a serving of food contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

Winter is the best time for seafood. Go on try out some recipes with mussel meat, they are filled protein and are super delicious !

Sharing below , my previously published and top listed sought out recipes using mussel meat, for your interest :

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