Mussels Stuffed With Ratatouille Salad
- 1 1/2 pounds fresh mussels - (abt 3 dozen)
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/3 cup finely-diced green bell peppers
- 1/3 cup finely-diced yellow bell peppers
- 1/3 cup finely-diced red bell peppers
- 1/3 cup finely-diced onions
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- 1/3 cup finely-diced yellow squash
- 1/3 cup finely-diced tomato
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons white wine
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh parsley
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh basil
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh tarragon
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 pinch freshly-ground black pepper
- Kosher salt as nedded for bed
- Coarsely-chopped fresh parsley for garnish
Scrub, rinse, and debeard the mussels. Spread the mussels in a single layer in a 13- by 9-inch heavy-duty aluminum foil pan. Pour 1/4 cup water over the mussels. Cover the pan with aluminum foil. Grill over Direct High heat until the mussels are opened, 5 to 6 minutes.
Remove from the grill; chill mussels. Remove mussels from shells and discard one half of the shell. (Note: Discard any unopened mussels as they are not safe to eat.)
To make the Salad: In a large sauté pan, warm the oil and sauté the bell peppers, onions, and garlic for 2 to 4 minutes; add the squash and continue sautéing for 2 minutes. Remove from heat and add the remaining ingredients. Mix well and chill completely.
Place about 1 tablespoon ratatouille salad in each mussel shell and place the shell on a bed of kosher salt. Top each salad-filled shell with a chilled mussel. Sprinkle with coarsely chopped parsley.
This recipe yields 6 to 8 appetizer servings.
Wine Recommendation: Find harmony with a crisp, dry rosé, especially a Tavel from France's Rhône Valley or an earthier rosado from the Navarra region of Spain. The wine's refreshing acidity will do the mussels and the salad justice.
Beer Recommendation: Beer with mussels is a national obsession in Belgium, so try one of Belgium's five true Trappist Abbey ales; Afflagem, Chimay, Orval, Rochefort, or Westmalle. You'll have an almost-creamy sweet and sour sauce for the mussels that emphasizes the freshness of the vegetables.
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