Cozze alla Marinara

(serves 4 | 20 minutes | easy)

Cozze alla Marinara is one of the “basic” staple dishes of Italian cuisine, they are light, easy to make and very, very delicious—as long as the fish is fresh! The alla marinara is a type of condiment used all over Italy for many different dishes, for example Pizza alla Marinara, the simplest (and in my opinion most delicious) pizza, with a bit of tomato sauce, olive oil and garlic. 

1kg fresh mussels (choose Sardinian ones for the best taste) – a handful of fresh parsley – 1 lemon – extra virgin olive oil – 1 garlic clove – 2 tbsp white wine – pepper

  1. Wash and clean the mussels in cold water.
  2. Slice the parsley very finely, cut the lemon in half and squeeze one half, add some olive oil and use a fork to whisk the mix until you create an opaque emulsion. 
  3. Squash the garlic clove, place it in a deep pot with a few lugs of olive oil and turn on the heat. Once the oil is hot and the garlic browns slightly, add the mussels, the white wine and cover with a lid.  
  4. After 4 to 5 minutes uncover the mussels and begin removing the open ones, placing them in a bowl. Once they have all opened (if some of them don’t open naturally don’t force them, just throw them away), separate the two shells, leaving the mussel on one side, and place in a large dish. 
  5. Pour the olive oil and lemon emulsion over the mussels, sprinkle the parsley and a couple of pepper grinds. Serve with the other lemon half on the side. 

NOTE: filter the wine sauce from when you cooked the mussels and add it to a tomato sauce when making a nice pasta dish. You can also freeze it for up to one month.