Mussels and chickpeas with bruschetta
- February 2006
- for 4 people
- Ready in 30 minutes
Keep the mussels in their shells for this impressive but easy midweek meal, eat them with your fingers, then enjoy mopping up the sauce with the garlicky bruschetta.
- 11.1g (1.6g saturated)
- 53.8g (5.9g sugar)
- 1kg fresh, live mussels
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
- 1 dried chilli, crushed, or 1/4 tsp crushed chillies (optional)
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 410g can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 400g can plum tomatoes
- 1/2 tsp sugar
- 8 slices bruschetta (see tip)
- Good handful of roughly chopped fresh flatleaf parsley
- Here is an easy way to prepare the mussels. Give them a generous, cold drink of salted water and immediately de-beard and clean them. Don’t leave mussels lying around in water for any length of time, as it does them no favours. Any that are still open after this brief ‘drink’ need to be double-checked. Tap them on the work surface and discard any that don’t close. (You should be safe as long as you remember the golden rule: they’re no good if they don’t close when raw, or open when cooked.) Drain the mussels.
- Heat the olive oil in a thick-bottomed pan over a medium heat. Fry the garlic and chilli briskly for 1 minute, then add the mussels and lemon juice. Cover and steam for about 2 minutes. Add the chickpeas to the pot and shake to distribute them (don’t stir them in – it will dislodge any open mussels).
- Squish the tomatoes in a colander so all the juice drains and you are left with a pulp. Add the pulp to the mussels (discard the juice) and shake, then add the sugar and shake again. Cover and simmer for about 2 minutes, or until all the mussels have opened and the stew is juicy. Season to taste.
- Prepare the bruschetta (see tip). Spoon the mussels and plenty of juice into 4 deep bowls, tuck 2 slices of bruschetta into each bowl. Garnish with chopped parsley and drizzle with an extra glug of oil, if you like.
To make bruschetta, grill or griddle good bread on both sides, rub with the cut side of a garlic clove, anoint liberally with extra-virgin olive oil and season with salt.
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