I just found out that my husband and son are going out tonight... now who will I cook for? Not a problem....oh ladies!!! I texted a few friends and... woo hoo.. it's a party!! But what will I make? Hmm... I know one of their favorites is MUSSELS. We can certainly make a meal out of a huge pot of mussels and a loaf of bread for soaking up the sauce. When I texted my friend, Dorothy, she had just made a big batch of her deliciously famous Empanadas. Lucky for us!! So she was bringing them over as well. Can't wait. She will definitely come over and share her empanada recipe with us someday. She makes a bunch of different ones. One day, after a few glasses of wine, we got a little carried away with all the different kinds we could make. I think we were going to open a food truck, too? That was a fun night. We came up with some good ones for sure. I am still waiting for that empanada party. maybe an empanada weekend at the shore. Now that sounds fabulous....
Anyway, back to the mussels. I ran to the store and got everything I would need.
MUSSELS IN A WHITE WINE TOMATO BASIL SAUCE
4 LBS MUSSELS (ABOUT A POUND A PERSON) 3 TBLSP OLIVE OIL 1 LARGE ONION 1 WHOLE HEAD OF GARLIC (ATLEAST) HANDFUL OF FRESH BASIL HANDFUL OF FRESH PARSLEY CHERRY TOMATOES 2 CUPS CHICKEN BROTH 2 CUPS WHITE WINE 1 LEMON SALT & PEPPER 2 TSP RED CRUSHED PEPPER
***DON'T FORGET THE BREAD (I GOT 2 JUST IN CASE) In a large saute pan heat up the oil. Saute the onion and sliced garlic until tender.
Now the wine... add it in and bring it up to a nice simmer and let it reduce for about 10 minutes. Next you can add the fresh chopped bail, red crushed pepper, the zest of about half of the lemon and the juice of the whole lemon. Season with salt & pepper. Slice the beautiful tomatoes in half (I like to us both the red and yellow for color). Goegeous!!
Lastly, add the chicken broth to the pot. This just adds to the amount of fluid in the pot to cook the mussels and makes more of that delicious sauce you will want to dip your bread in. Let in all softly simmer for just about 15 minutes more and you are ready to throw your mussels in. Of course, make sure they are cleaned really well and you discard any that look a little questionable. Once you add them, cover the pot and let them all steam in there until they are opened. This goes very quick, but if you are making a huge pot like I am, it may be a few minutes longer. So, I will just tell you to watch them until they are all opened. In the meantime grab yourself that nice loaf of crusty bread and slice it up.
I use bowls to serve this is so you can ladle in lots of that sauce. To finish each bowl you can top them off with a drizzle of olive oil on top followed by some fresh chopped parsley and basil, and a little squueze of lemon. And please, please, please don'f forget the fresh grated parmesan cheese. Perfect.
WOW!!! Looks beautiful, smells delicious...it's all good. Dorothy has arrived with her amazing Empanadas and now we will enjoy a fantastic meal, some great wine and great friends. I LOVE MY FRIENDS!!!