New Zealand green lipped mussels are listed as sustainable, and our local supermarket had them this week for less than $5 a kilo. We may be the last ever generation to be able to readily afford seafood like this so it had to be worth inviting friends for dinner. They have a lot of food miles, coming from New Zealand, and they’re frozen. But in the scheme of compromises you need to make about seafood, that’s not too bad. Mussels are a really good source of Omega 3s and there is some evidence they could have good anti-inflammatory properties. As we come into the hayfever season, that’s a plus for me.
A bowl of mussels like this with some good sourdough for dipping is a real gourmet feast.
Makes four big bowls full.
Scrub and de-beard 2.5 kilos of mussels.
Sauté a couple of chopped onions in a little olive oil for a few minutes till they become translucent.
Add lots of garlic (as much as you are willing to add this time of year, when garlic is starting to run really low!).
Add a couple of finely chopped chilis, depending on how hot your chilis are and how spicy you like your food. I have pickled and dried chilis for just this time of year.
Sauté for a minute then add
- juice of a big, juicy lemon,
- a dessertspoon of finely chopped thyme,
- 5 bay leaves,
- 2 cups of fish stock
- a generous swig of white wine
- 2.5 kg mussels
Serve with a good crusty sourdough for dipping, or over rice to soak up the juices. Provide a fingerbowl and a bowl for the shells, and don’t even try to be elegant!