Christopher Stewart, Eating Fabulously, fab recipe, mussels, seafood, chorizo, NYC

photo via Brenda B. 
Can I get an  amen that its above 35 degrees here in NYC! I was in my neighborhood grocery store recently and one thing about this grocery store, is that they  have a great fish and seafood department. They always have a great variety of fish and shellfish, and the product is always fresh and packed on tons of ice. Whether it be calamari tubes, tile fish steaks, simple basa fillets or white shrimp I've always picked up some great items here. And it helps that they always have great sales on seafood as well. Mussels were on sale recently and plentiful. A 2# bag of fresh mussels for $2.99 was a great purchase. I dug through the ice, grabbed 2 bags, and rushed home to cook!  A couple of rules to remember when preparing mussels! 

  • Rinse fresh mussels under cold water to get extra sand and dirty off. 
  • Remove the small furry "beard" from the side of the mussels before cooking. (just yank it off) 
  • Discard any opened mussels from the bunch. Do not cook opened or cracked mussels. 

Mussels in Chorizo Tomato Broth 

1 - 2lb. bag of PEI mussels 
1/2 lb. dried chorizo, sliced and divided into 2 parts 
1 1/2 c. chicken broth 
1/2c. of canned whole peeled tomato's + liquid OR 1/2c. of your favorite tomato sauce. 
4 garlic cloves, peeled and sliced in half 
4 sprigs of fresh thyme 
5T. butter 
1/2 bunch fresh Italian parsley, chopped 
Olive oil
salt and pepper, to taste

Rinse, remove beards and any opened mussels. Place clean mussels in the fridge until needed. In a medium pot, combine chicken broth and 1 part of the chorizo and simmer, about 2o minutes. Strain liquid, discard (or eat!) chorizo and set aside. In a large skillet with a lid, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add sliced garlic and remaining chorizo, cooking for about 2 minutes. Add tomatoes (crush tomatoes loosely in hand before adding into skillet) and add thyme sprigs and cook until the tomato sauce becomes thickened about 5 minutes, and then add chorizo stock. Add butter and season heavily with salt and pepper.  Add mussels to the tomato sauce, cover with a lid and cook mussels, until all of them begin to open completely, roughly about 6 minutes. After 6 minutes, remove lid from mussels and with a large spoon, toss mussels  in the tomato broth starting at the bottom of the pan, making sure the tomato broth gets into the opened mussels. Spoon mussels and chorizo into large bowls, top with chopped parsley and your favorite toasted bread and serve hot! 

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