Summer is seafood time. In Apulia, one of the tastiest recipes is based on mussels, together with rice and potatoes. Here is the recipe by chef Angelo Sabatelli.
Rice, Potatoes and Mussels “essential”
Yields 4 servings
20 g Carnaroli rice
8 g Canestrato cheese, grated
Peanut oil for frying
For the mussels
500 g mussels
1 l mineral water, boiling
For the mussel broth
400 g mussel broth
20 g extra-virgin olive oil
10 g parsley, coarsely chopped
1 garlic clove, unpeeled
Potatoes and zucchini
100 g potatoes
100 g zucchini
80 g extra-virgin olive oil
50 g candied tomato petals
3 g di lemon zest
For the puffed rice: cook the rice for 30 minutes in salted water, drain well and dehydrate at 60°C for approx. 3 hours. The result must be dry but not too much, otherwise i twill not grow during cooking. Heat the oil at 190°, pour in the rice and as soon as it puffs up, drain it well on paper towel. While still hot, dust it with grated cheese. Store in a warm place.
For the mussels: clean and trim the bivalves and place them in a very hot pan over vivacious heat; add a ladle of water. Once open, drain the mussels saving the liquid in one container and the meats in another, and discarding the shells.
For the mussel broth: sauté the garlic in olive oil until golden, add the chopped parsley followed immediately by the mussel liquid set aside earlier. When the liquid boils, remove the garlic and add a tsp. of Maizena to thicken. Adjust seasoning if necessary. Before serving, add the mussels to the piping hot broth.
Note: the broth should not be too liquid, which will sog the rice too quickly.
For the potatoes and zucchini: peel and cube the potatoes, chop the zucchini in the same size (approx. ½ centimetre cubes) using only the green part. Discard the white pulp. In a pan, sauté the potatoes with olive oil until golden and cooked through. Add the zucchini and sauté for 1 minute, adjust seasoning.
For the tomatoes: season with lemon zest, place in a Pacojet glass and blast freeze. Process and place the obtained mix in a pastry bag (as an alternative to Pacojet, use a powerful blender to reduce to a fine cream).
Plate: Pipe 3 tips of candied tomato cream in 4 deep dishes. Distribute in each plate potatoes and zucchini, add 5 mussels in each plate, 3 full tablespoons of broth in each plate, a thread of olive oil and serve.
Finish each plate by adding to each plate 2 spoonfuls of puffed rice.