Spicy Mussel Stew
Originally a Neapolitan recipe, but now popular everywhere, the secret is to choose very fresh mussels
1.5kg cleaned mussels
2 cloves garlic
handful fresh parsley
To make a mussel stew, the most important thing is to choose very fresh mussels, ensure yourself that the package has a label with the packaging date on it.
Farmed mussels are usually sold already cleaned, if you buy wild mussels you will need to clean them yourself. Make sure they are all well closed with no broken shells. Discard any that are open. With a small knife remove any barnacles from the shell and remove the beard, all under running water.
At this point you can begin cooking. Pour a good glug of oil into a large pot and add the garlic cloves. Add the mussels and cover. Wait until all the shells have opened.
During cooking, the mussels will release a delicious liquid (which you can also use as a spaghetti sauce). After about 15 minutes, all the mussels should be open. If that is not yet the case, cover again and cook a few more minutes. Serve hot with crusty bread and, naturally, a good handful of pepper and fresh chopped parsley. Add a squeeze of lemon juice if desired.