Mussels are plump, juicy sea nuggets, they taste of the sea. Baby muscles are sweet and should be briefly cooked in a hot stainless-steel pan with a tight-fitting lid. The best part is when they clatter around the pan in their own delicious stock.

This recipe is seriously tasty, each mussel is carefully placed on a warm baking tray, and dolloped with spoonfuls of chilli butter, almond crumbs, parmesan dustings, lemon peel and thyme leaves. Slowly grill them, and gracefully watch how the mussels plump up with fragrant juices in its pearlescent shells.

Mussels are cheap and flavoursome, this recipe is perfect if you fancy a change of cooking them in a saucepan of white wine and fresh herbs. Grilling them with a glistening layer of chilli, the buttery almond crumb will give you a newfound love of mussels.

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Serves 2
Ingredients:

Small bag of mussels (20-24)
1 small glass of white wine

Ingredients for the herb butter:

2 tablespoons Azada Olive Oil & Chilli
100 grams unsalted butter
1 small garlic clove, minced/pureed
4 tablespoons of ground almonds
2-3 tablespoons of freshly grated parmesan
2 teaspoons of dried thyme leaves
A little zest of lemon
A small handful of parsley, finely chopped
Sea salt for seasoning

Method:

Prepare the mussels, check for broken and dead ones and discard them. Thoroughly clean and scrub them and set aside in cold salted water. *Following the cleaning guidelines from the CHICKPEAS WITH CLAMS IN A WALNUT OIL PASTE recipe.

Preheat the grill to medium-high heat.

In a large mixing bowl add the butter, Azada Olive Oil and Chilli, parsley, thyme, garlic, lemon zest and a seasoning of salt.

Once combined mix in the ground almonds and parmesan and set aside.

Heat a stainless-steel pan over moderate heat, pour in the white wine and once the alcohol has burnt off (about 1 minute) add the prepared mussels and cover tightly with a lid. Allow them to steam for a minute or two until their shells clatter and slowly open.

Carefully take the mussels out of the pan, pulling off the top shells as you go. Lay them flat on a lined baking tray. Dollop a generous teaspoon of the herby butter over each mussel, then cook under a preheated grill till vigorously bubbling and the almond crumb turns golden.

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