Catalan-Style Mussel Soup

17 Sep

It’s getting nippy outside, and we’re starting to think more about cooking up warming dishes for fall. Today, Executive Chef Rob Bragagnolo, of Marben restaurant in Toronto, shares with us a recipe that helps bridge the seasons: Catalan-Style Mussel Soup. Classic Mediterranean ingredients such as anis, tomatoes and garlic conjure up the last few rays of summer sunshine. A steaming fish broth brings autumn coziness to the table.


Serves 4

1 kg (4 cups) fresh mussels
25 mL (2 tbsp) olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
3 large ripe tomatoes, skinned, seeded and chopped
200 mL (3/4 cup + 2 tbsp) fish stock
A pinch of saffron
5 mL (1 tsp) paprika
2 mL (½ tsp) ground cinnamon
100 mL (1/3 cup + 2 tbsp) anis liqueur or Pernod
Juice of ½ a lemon
25 mL (2 tbsp) fresh parsley, chopped
Slices of stale bread
Salt and pepper to taste

Clean the mussels, discarding any that are broken or slightly open. Heat the olive oil in a stockpot or large saucepan and sweat the chopped onions and garlic over a gentle flame until they start to soften. Add the chopped tomatoes and cook for 3-4 minutes, until the tomatoes are cooked and the sauce has thickened.

Add the fish stock, mussels, saffron, paprika and cinnamon. Cover with a lid and cook for 3-4 minutes until all the mussels are open. Remove the mussels with a slotted spoon and remove the flesh from their shells. Return the mussel flesh back to the saucepan. Add the anis, lemon juice and chopped parsley. Season with salt and pepper.

Line four soup bowls with sliced bread, pour over the hot soup and serve immediately.

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This recipe is part of a series we’re doing with some of our favourite Canadian chefs, in partnership with Le Creuset. Check in each day for new dishes using colourful Le Creuset cookware and the chance to win some of those goodies for yourself in our giveaway contest. For contest details, click here. Good luck!

3 Responses to “Catalan-Style Mussel Soup”

  1. Debbie Bashford September 17th, 2013 at 9:31 AM #

    I do have a question about the contest, in the entry form there is a box and they want you to Enter your Answer, but there is no question? Do you have any idea what they are asking?? Thanks in advance

    • Valerie Howes September 17th, 2013 at 9:35 AM #

      Hi Debbie, this is an error. Our apologies. It is being fixed today. No need to give an answer for this contest. Good luck!

      • Debbie Bashford September 18th, 2013 at 8:16 AM #

        thank you

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