This is one of our favourite meals using mussels – everything you need is in one dish, it’s full of flavour and you can make it as spicy as you like by using a milder or hotter chorizo. I like cooking it in this deep enamelled dish as you can take straight from the stove top to the table. When I steam the mussels open I use a Charles Viancin silicone lid on top of the dish. You can make the sauce quickly or if you have more time let in simmer and reduce to intensify the flavour. I keep topping it up a bit with the mussel stock. You’ll see I’m now including a shopping list of ingredients that come from La Cigale and/or our market stallholders.
- Ingredients – no need to be too precise (this quality serves 3 or 4)
- 2-3 scoops of fresh mussels (about 8 mussels per person), scrubbed and de-bearded
- Up to a cup of white wine
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 2 stalks of celery finely chopped
- 4-6 cloves of garlic, crushed
- 1 tin of cherry tomatoes or crushed tomatoes
- 1 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 tin of cannellini beans
- As much or as little sliced chorizo as you like
- ½ – 1 tsp sweet smoked paprika (optional)
- Pinch of cayenne pepper or chilli flakes (optional depending on how hot the chorizo is)
- Up to 1 cup of fish stock
- Bunch of cavolo nero or kale, leaves stripped from stalks and roughly chopped or baby spinach leaves
Steam the mussels open in some of the wine and a little water. Drain the mussels and set them aside. Strain the liquid and also set it aside.
Heat a little oil in a large pot or Spanish enamelled mussel pot. Add the onion and celery and gently cook till soft but not brown. This will take 10-15 minutes. Just before this is ready add the sliced chorizo and cook for 3-4 minutes. Add the garlic, chilli if using and paprika and cook for another minute.
Next add the tomatoes, tomato paste, wine, liquid from the mussels and ½ cup of fish stock. Bring to the boil and simmer for at least 15-20 minutes. It needs to reduce a bit and thicken up. Add the beans and cook for another 15 minutes. Add more stock and/or water if necessary as it cooks.
Take about half the mussels from their shells and leave the rest in. About 5 minutes before you want to serve this, stir the cavolo nero into the tomato sauce. Cook for 2-3 minutes. Add all the mussels. Heat through and serve in large bowls with plenty of fresh bread.
Cherry tomatoes, cannellini beans, paprika – La Cigale Kitchen Shop
Chorizo – Salash and Bentru
Onion, garlic, celery, cavolo nero – Jason Your Heartland Greengrocer
Fish stock – Simon Gault