Mussels in Curried Coconut Sauce

Mussels are simply delicious and adaptable to a variety of preparations – simply steamed with white wine, onions and herbs, combined with tomatoes in the manner of Provence, and here, sauced with a southeast Asian flair. Served over aromatic basmati (or even regular white) rice, and garnished with fresh cilantro, this is a satisfying meal that cooks up in the time that it takes to cook the rice.

Mussels in Curried Coconut Sauce (Serves 2 with rice)

2 lb mussels

1 medium onion, diced

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 tsp vegetable oil

2 tsp or more curry powder

1 c coconut milk (half a 14 oz can)

Juice of 2 limes

A squirt of two of Sriracha (red rooster) sauce or some red pepper flakes

2 tbsp cilantro leaves, torn

Basmati rice, cooked and kept warm

Clean the mussels and remove the beards. Set aside.

Saute the onions and garlic in vegetable oil until translucent. Add the coconut milk and lime and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer for a few minutes. Add the mussels and cover the pot, allowing the mussels to steam until open, about 4-5 minutes. Discard any that do not open.

Remove the mussels to a bowl. Add the hot sauce or hot pepper flakes, going slowly, until the seasonings seem okay. Add more lime juice if desired and the cilantro.

Sauce the rice and serve some mussels on top, with more to the side.

Note: I find that the liquid produced from the mussels, combined with the coconut milk, produces enough liquid. If you prefer a brothier mix, you can add a little chicken broth to the coconut milk.

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