FFWD – Mussels and Chorizo With or Without Pasta

The mussels ready for scrubbing and debearding.

I’m not sure who decided that a pound of mussels was a single serving, but this week’s dish proves it to be a generous calculation. I halved the recipe and was able to feed five people. Granted, we ate it with some lovely spinach rice pasta from Tinkyada and some even lovelier bread from one of my favourite bakeries, so I guess that helped stretch the portions. Regardless, we were all well-satisfied with the meal.

The onion, red pepper, and garlic before their introduction to the cutting board.

I’d spent the day with my nieces, providing a little back up as they attempted their first Tuesdays with Dorie recipe. They succeeded brilliantly, I must say – the chocolate truffle tart they made was a fantastic finish to our meal.

It was a great way to spend the day. Earlier, my mother shared the kitchen with us as she made a creamy lentil soup for our lunch. I provided troubleshooting advice and a little bit of hands on help for the girls as they worked their way through the stages of their tart construction. I also got them started on their first blog post, then left them together, side by side, as they chose and edited their photos and wrote the text.

What was once a lovely, whole chorizo sausage and is now bite-sized morsels.

Later on, I started working on the mussels and chorizo pasta. This is one of those recipes where more time is taken in preparation than in the actual cooking. Chopping the vegetables, frying the chorizo, and debearding the mussels were the difficult parts of this recipe. Which is to say, there weren’t really any difficult parts. In fact, cooking the pasta – a completely hands off task – was the one thing I had to budget time for.

So, just when the truffle tart came out of the oven, I put the pasta on and by the time it was cooked, everything was ready to go into another pot for the main event. The total cooking time is about 15 minutes, from cooking down the vegetables to steaming the mussels. It’s hard to believe a meal this impressive is quick enough for a weeknight dinner.

A plateful at the table.

I hadn’t cooked mussels before, but I’m definitely over that apprehension now. I’m also looking forward to baking and cooking again with family, soon.

Mussels and chorizo up close

You can find many other blogged descriptions of this week’s FFWD recipe here: Mussels and Chorizo With or Without Pasta


32 thoughts on “FFWD – Mussels and Chorizo With or Without Pasta

  1. Does that mean your nieces are working on your TWD post? How fun!
    Four pounds of mussels were definitely enough to feed a small army (I had mine for lunches three days and finally gave up when I was sick of eating it…)
    Have a great weekend! And see you on Tuesday.

  2. Teresa, Your photos are lovely! They show off your perfect looking dinner! I actually halved my mussels because there were only two of us eating. I had no mussels leftover…my husband is a huge fan! I didn’t make pasta I served mine with crusty bread.

    1. Thanks, Kathy! This was a really amazing meal. My partner is the same as your husband about mussels, but missed out because he has the flu (which I unfortunately passed on to him), so I’m going to be making this again soon for him to enjoy. Bread is a must for this isn’t it? Even when you serve it with pasta!

  3. Your photos are seriously making me crave a bowl of these mussels, everything looks delicious! I will have to make these very soon! Can’t wait to see the chocolate tarts;-)

  4. It will be so much fun to cook/bake with your nieces. Lifelong memories will be made as well as kitchen skills, blogging skills, etc. My most fun with these cooking/blogging experiences is involving family. Two of my daughters are also doing TWD and sometimes my grandkiddies come to help me, and usually someone comes to eat with me…lots of tasters. Totally the best!!! Your mussels look fabulous and so do your photos.

    1. It’s really great spending time with them and having projects to do. I love how involved your family is with your French Fridays/TwD adventures – it’s so much fun to read about.

  5. Happy to hear that you enjoyed this one. I have always used the 1 pound of mussels per person rule before and this is the first time I had leftovers. I think the rule assumes that you will need to throw some away both before and after cooking. It also assumes that the recipe is a basic one, with only a simple white wine broth & some bread, no pasta or bulky sausage or other sides. I kind of forgot that little detail when I ordered my mussels this time and ended up with leftovers. Oh well, they were tasty anyway.

  6. I agree about the generous serving portion. I made 4 pounds for two people, planning on leftovers. We ate it for dinner twice and lunch twice. This was a wonderful meal, and the chocolate truffle tart sounds like a delicious way to end it.

    1. I don’t think I’d say no to leftovers of this dish. The truffle tart was lovely and the girls were really pleased at how well it turned out.

  7. It looks delicious! And it sounds like you had a perfect day in the kitchen. I am looking forward to reading your nieces’ post about the chocolate truffle tart on Tuesday. What a great dessert for this impressive dish.

    1. Thanks, Elaine, it really was the perfect day. I’ve seen their draft post and I think you’ll enjoy it. (The privileges of aunt-hood.)

  8. Yes, the one pound of mussels I bought was enough for 2 dinners for me! And I just made my truffle tarts this afternoon…hope I can photograph them before the boys dig in 🙂

  9. Thanks, Julie and Liz! Looking forward to seeing your truffle tarts, too, Liz – your presentation is always beautiful.

  10. What a great way to spend time with family. It was so nice to see how you mentored the young cooks from baking to blogging! Great mussels recipe and I’m glad that you also got over your apprehension about preparing mussels.

  11. What a great day with your family! I love cooking with my nieces! Now I have to go see how their tarts turned out!

    I thought this was a good recipe too – and want to try it again, when I can conveniently find some more mussels! So happy that you enjoyed it. Your photos look gorgeous as always too!!

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