Campania-Style Mussels

Serves 4

These juicy mussels are very easy to prepare. Fresh tomatoes, capers, lemon juice and lemon zest provide the backbone of this traditional dish from Campania. Don't forget to serve with crusty bread to mop up all the sauce. For variety, try freshly cooked fettuccine noodles instead of bread.

Ingredients: 
  • 2 pounds fresh mussels, in the shell, each scrubbed and rinsed
  • 1 baguette, cut in 1/2-inch diagonal slices
  • 4 tablespoons tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1/3 cup white wine
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 5 medium cloves garlic, peeled, sliced
  • 4 vine-ripened medium tomatoes, peeled and seeded, chopped, about 1 cup
  • 3 tablespoons capers in brine, drained
  • 1/2 cup black olives, pitted, cut in half
  • Sea salt, to taste
  • Ground pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped
  • 2 lemons, strained, Juice of
  • 1 lemon, finely minced, zest of
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Method: 

Preheat oven to 250°F. Sort through all mussels. Tap all the opened ones and discard those that do not close up after tapping. Arrange bread slices on a baking sheet, drizzle with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil, turn and drizzle on the other side with another tablespoon of oil. Bake until lightly toasted, about 10 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool.

In a medium pot with a lid bring white wine, bay leaf and chicken broth to a boil and cook for about 5 minutes to allow flavors to infuse. Add garlic slices and let cook for another minute. Add all mussels at once, and follow with tomatoes, capers and olives. Season with freshly ground pepper. Reduce heat to medium.

Put lid on pot, shake pot vigorously and let cook until mussels have opened, no longer than 5 minutes, shaking pot halfway through and using a slotted spoon to stir mussels, spooning juices over mussels. Once almost all mussels have opened up, remove from the heat and sprinkle with the lemon juice and half of the chopped parsley. Mix well and taste liquid in bottom. Season with salt and pepper if needed, keeping in mind that both the capers and olives will already have added plenty of salt to the dish. Discard any mussels with unopened shells.

Serve immediately in 4 large bowls. Sprinkle the rest of the parsley on top and place a couple of toasted bread slices on the side to mop up all the liquid. If desired, drizzle the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil over the mussels. Finally, sprinkle each serving with lemon zest.

Nutritional Info: 
Per Serving:370 calories (130 from fat), 14g total fat, 2.5g saturated fat, 65mg cholesterol, 740mg sodium, 27g carbohydrate (3g dietary fiber, 5g sugar), 32g protein
Special Diets: 

Note: We've provided special diet and nutritional information for educational purposes. But remember — we're cooks, not doctors! You should follow the advice of your health-care provider. And since product formulations change, check product labels for the most recent ingredient information. See our Terms of Service.

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