First posted: Jun 2, 2013

Arabiatta Mussels with Parmesan Ciabattas


Episode 5 – West Coast
Beer-basted Prawns with Basil and Lime Mayonnaise
Mussels in Tomato and Basil Sauce
Honey and Soy Hake with Pak Choi and Coconut Jasmine Rice
Baie Lekker Basil & Berry Gelato



Cooks in:        Serves:4

  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 deseeded and finely chopped red chilli or ½ tsp dried chilli flakes
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 x 410 g can chopped peeled tomatoes
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 750 g fresh mussels with shells intact, rinsed
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • a handful of roughly chopped fresh basil or parsley
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 ciabatta rolls
  • olive oil for drizzling
  • Parmesan shavings, for serving

What to do

1. Heat the olive oil in a frying pan and fry the garlic and chilli for 2 minutes or until the garlic has softened but not colored.

2. Add in the chopped tomatoes and sugar and leave to simmer on medium heat for 10 minutes.

3. Add in the mussels, put the lid on, and leave them to steam for about 4-6 minutes, or until they have opened. Remove from the heat, discard any mussels that have not opened, stir through the lemon juice and fresh basil and add a generous pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper.

4. In the meantime, preheat the oven’s grill to the highest setting, slice the ciabatta rolls in half and place under the grill for 2–3 minutes until golden. Remove, drizzle with olive oil and top with Parmesan shavings.

5. Spoon the mussels in their sauce into warm bowls, and serve with the rolls on the side. Alternatively, serve over angel-hair pasta.

Although fresh is always better, this dish works well using frozen mussels rinsed under luke warm tap water.

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Bitten Episode 5