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Mussels in green curry broth

(Andrew Scrivani for The New York Times)
By Catherine Smart
May 20, 2009

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Serves 4 as a main course

Green curry paste with a touch of heat puts a Thai twist on classic French mussels. Using Maine mussels makes eating local unfussy and inexpensive. To begin, saute curry paste, shallots, garlic, and tomatoes. Add the shellfish, cover the pot, and in about 10 minutes, you've got an impressive weeknight meal. Serve with crusty baguette to sop up every last bit of the savory broth.

4 pounds mussels
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon green curry paste
3 shallots, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
3 plum tomatoes, chopped
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups dry white wine
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
Black pepper, to taste

1. Rinse mussels under cold running water and pull off any stringy beards. Discard any that do not open after cooking.

2. In a pot large enough to hold all the mussels, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the curry paste and cook, stirring, for 1 minute.

3. Add shallots and garlic and cook 1 minute more. Add tomatoes and salt and cook 2 minutes more.

4. Stir in mussels and pour in wine. Cover and steam for 7 minutes. Remove lid and sprinkle with cilantro and pepper.