Want a warm bowl of savory goodness? Make this. Want to impress a new boyfriend or girlfriend? Make this. Having a dinner party at your house? Make this for an appetizer. Holy cow, guys…it’s so tasty. I promise. This may very well be one of my favorite recipes I’ve ever made because it 1) is so easy that it hardly seems possible, 2) it packs a wallop of flavor and 3) you can substitute ingredients based on availability and it’ll be just as good.
You’ll notice I used pancetta (basically Italian ham that is bacon-like in flavor) but you could use regular bacon or even lardons – ooh, fancy French term alert – which is another form of pork belly. Bonus points for the fact that pancetta or lardons usually comes pre-chopped! The bottom line is to use something bacon-esque for a smoky depth of flavor. If you can’t find pre-cooked mussel or clam meat, you can use whole shellfish – just be sure to double the amount – and just steam them in the broth until they open (or try shrimp instead).
Prep time: 5 min Cook time: 10 min Makes: 2-3 appetizer servings
- 6 oz (180 g) pancetta
- 8 oz (240 g) cooked mussels or clams
- 3 cloves of garlic, minced finely
- 1.5 cup (350 mL) coconut milk
- Juice of 1 lemon
- Handful of fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
- Pepper to taste
- In a large skillet over medium heat, render the pancetta until crispy.
- To the same skillet, add the mussels, garlic and coconut milk. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer 6-8 minutes or until the coconut milk begins to reduce down just a bit.
- Turn off the heat and add the lemon juice, parsley and pepper.
- Done. Eat. Receive compliments.