On a recent visit to Brussels, I learned that mussels aren’t available in restaurants in the months that don’t include the letter “R.” So mussels are available only from September through to April, but they’re trickier to find during the European summer months. Interestingly in Ireland, this saying isn’t so common. Like with all produce, buy from a reputable business; the last thing you want is to test that saying! Summer months call for lighter meals and nothing could be better than a seafood dinner with zesty Thai flavours. This perfect as an starter or a main, for entertaining or as a simple weekday meal, it ticks all the boxes! Serves 4 as a starter or 2 as a main.
- 1kg mussels, washed, scrubbed and de-bearded. Discard any that don’t close when lightly tapped on the kitchen bench.
- 2 thumb-sized pieces of ginger
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1 large red chilli
- 5 lemongrass stalks, tough outer removed section removed and trimmed
- 1 tbsp water
- 1 red onion, thinly sliced
- 400ml tin of reduced fat coconut milk
- juice of a lime
- 1 tbsp fish sauce
- Place ginger, garlic, chilli, lemongrass and water in a food processor and blitz until a paste forms.
- In a large saucepan, over a medium-high heat, add the oil and fry the onion until softened.
- Add the spice paste and fry for 1-2 minutes.
- Add the coconut milk, lime juice and fish sauce and bring to the boil.
- Add the mussels to the saucepan and cover with a lid. Cook for 5 minutes, or until they’re open and cooked through.
- Garnish with spring onions and coriander, serve and enjoy!