There's something about cooking that can be so reassuring and yet so unexpected. I never know quite where a recipe will take me, but I always find comfort in cooking. Last week took a turn that I did not anticipate, at least not in that moment. Let's just say it was my least favorite week of the summer. Ever since then I have been searching for a recipe, one that will help me get back in that grove.
Sometimes when you have a good momentum going, even if it begins in the kitchen, it can take you to an unexpected place.
Mussels. I have had mussels on my mind for a week, and last night I had some friends over for dinner and prepared them for the first time. Turns out, it was exactly what I needed and they were absolutely stunning, swimming perfectly in a red curry sea.
I also made a fetticiuni pasta, embedded with tomatoes and flare as a side. The two compliment each other well. It was the perfect Thursday night, in the kitchen.
For the Mussels:
1 13.5 oz can coconut milk
1 cup canned crushed tomatoes
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 sweet onion, thinly sliced
2lb. mussels, scrubbed
1 baguette, toasted
Bring coconut milk, tomatoes, wine and curry paste to a boil in a large pot, stir well. Reduces heat and add onion slices as well as salt and pepper to taste. Bring liquid to a simmer (4 - 8 minutes). Add mussels and cover the pot. Feel free to shake the pot so that each mussel has a chance to get a taste of the sauce (5-8 minutes).
2 slices bread, toasted
Red chili flakes to taste
1 lb. small tomatoes, sliced
1 oz pecorino, grated
3 tbsp. olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper
Pulse toast in a food processor to create crumbs. Cook pasta until al dente. Meanwhile, heat olive oil, chili flakes and tomatoes (6- 10 minutes, until sizzling, blistered). Add pasta, cheese and 1 cup cooking liquid to the tomatoes. Season with salt, pepper, breadcrumbs and additional cheese and serve.
***All recipes revised from Bon Appetit August 2014 Edition
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