zuppa di cozze
2 pounds mussels
8 garlic cloves
1/4 cup dry white wine
4 large ripe tomatoes
1/4 cup finely chopped parsley
6 basil leaves
pinch crushed red chili pepper
extra virgin olive oil as needed
fresh ground black pepper
bread for bruschette
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Wash and scrub the mussels, removing the beards and any
material attached to the shells.
Slice and dice the onion into small pieces. Slice the tomatoes in
half, gently squeeze the seeds from them, and then coarsely
Place a large pot on the range over moderately high heat, add
1/4 cup of olive oil, the diced onions, at least 4 garlic cloves, and
let cook for several minutes until the ingredients begin to wilt.
Add the wine, tomatoes, ground black pepper and, if desired,
add the chili pepper, then the mussels. Cover the pot and steam
for about 15 minutes, stirring the bottom shells from time to
time to ensure they are evenly cooked.
When the mussels have finished cooking, stir in the chopped
parsley, place the mussel soup in individual bowls and place two
slices of bruschette on each bowl, and serve.
To make the bruschette, diagonally slice about 12 pieces of
bread, preferably from a baguette or long Italian loaf, and toast.
Slice a garlic clove in half, rub each slice of toast with the garlic,
then drizzle some olive oil on each slice. This will use up about 4
Another technique is to heat a saute pan, brush each slice of
bread with olive oil, toast each side in the pan until golden
brown, and then rub with garlic.