Feb 23, 2015

Steamed Mussels in Saffron Chorizo Broth

Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 20 mins
The chorizo and mussels create a briny, savory broth that just begs to be soaked up with bread.

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This Mediterranean inspired seafood dish has a lot going for it. It features both mussels and chorizo. Both are cheap, and mussels are quick to cook. The chorizo and steamed mussels create a briny, savory broth that just begs to be soaked up with bread.

This is one of those meals that if it were served at a restaurant, I would be embarrassingly soaking up every drop of the broth as someone comes over to the table to attempt to clear the finished dishes (that happens to me a lot at restaurants). Mexican chorizo is a type of sausage seasoned with chili peppers and vinegar – it comes in a tube much like a link of sausage – it differs from the hard, cured Spanish chorizo.

Steamed Mussels in Saffron Chorizo Broth

Key ingredients in this recipe

  • Mussels – Mussels have a long shaggy beard, which must be removed before cooking. Do this by pulling the beard away from the shell. Removing the beard kills the mussel, so perform this right before cooking the mussels. When steaming the mussels, toss any mussels that do not open when steamed. This means they have most likely gone bad and are not suitable to be eaten.
  • Chorizo – This recipe uses Mexican chorizo, fresh pork sausage made from pork and spices. It’s made from a combination of fatty pork and sometimes additional parts of the animal as well (especially in many common commercial brands).
  • Leek – Leeks are a part of the allium family and add a more mild, sweeter taste than onions.
  • Saffron – Threads of the red spice are beautiful but they are also quite expensive. It’s so expensive (it made the list of most expensive foods) because each flower only produces a few threads and blooms for only a few weeks every year — not to mention they are harvested by hand. The threads of saffron add a subtle, sweet flavor as well as that striking color to the steamed mussels.
  • Fish stock – Fish stock, also called seafood stock is made from simmering the shells of lobster, shrimp, crab shells or other fish bones with white wine and other aromatics. I often buy seafood stock though you can easily make your own – especially if you cook whole lobsters for this recipe. 
  • Heavy cream – I add heavy cream, the thick part of the milk that rises to the top due to its high fat content to finish the sauce to create a rich, creamy mixture. Omit to make the steamed mussels recipe dairy-free.
ground pork chorizo

How to make this steamed mussels recipe

  1. Soak the mussels. Add the mussels to a large bowl filled with cold water and flour. This will help to remove any excess grit from the mussels as well as plump them up.
  2. Cook the chorizo. In a large pot over medium heat, add the olive oil and heat through. Add the chorizo, leeks and onion. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the chorizo is cooked through and the onions are tender, about 6 to 8 minutes.
  3. Add the aromatics. Stir in the garlic, diced tomato and saffron and cook until fragrant, about 4 minutes. Next, add the fish stock and bring to a boil. Turn the heat down to low and simmer the broth for 20 minutes.
  4. Steam the mussels. While the broth is simmering, combine the wine and shallots in another large pot, and bring to a boil.. Rinse and drain the mussels then add them to the wine mixture, cover and cook over high heat until the mussels open, about 5 minutes.
  5. Create the broth. Strain the cooking liquid through a fine mesh strainer into a large bowl, then add to the chorizo fish broth mixture. Cover the mussels and set them aside.
  6. Finish with cream. Once the broth is done simmering, turn the heat up to medium, and whisk in the heavy cream until combined. Season with salt, pepper and thyme.
  7. Serve. To serve, divide the mussels between bowls, and ladle the broth over the top. Serve hot with bread on the side to dip in the broth.

Other recipes to try

If you enjoy this steamed mussels recipe, I’d recommend giving these a try:

Steamed mussels are paired with a creamy spiced. Mexican chorizo broth with saffron for a quick and cheap recipe filled with flavor.

Steamed Mussels in Saffron Chorizo Broth

Print Pin
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 2 pounds mussels, scrubbed and debearded
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 5 ounces Mexican pork chorizo*, about ¾ cup
  • 1 small yellow onion, finely diced
  • 1 medium leek, white and tender greens parts only, finely diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 medium roma tomato, cored and finely diced
  • ¼ teaspoon saffron, crumbled
  • 3 cups fish stock
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 1 tablespoon finely minced shallots
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • Kosher salt, as needed
  • Freshly ground black pepper, as needed
  • 1 teaspoon chopped thyme
  • French baguette, sliced and toasted, for serving

Instructions:

  • Soak the mussels in a large bowl filled with cold water and flour. This will help to remove any excess grit from the mussels as well as plump them up.
  • In a large pot over medium heat, add the olive oil and heat through. Add the chorizo, leeks and onion. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the chorizo is cooked through and the onions are tender, about 6 to 8 minutes.
  • Add the garlic, diced tomato and saffron and cook until fragrant, about 4 minutes. Add the fish stock and bring to a boil. Turn the heat down to low and simmer the broth for 20 minutes.
  • While the broth is simmering, combine the wine and shallots in another large pot, and bring to a boil.. Rinse and drain the mussels then add them to the wine mixture, cover and cook over high heat until the mussels open, about 5 minutes.
  • Strain the cooking liquid through a fine mesh strainer into a large bowl, then add to the chorizo fish broth mixture. Cover the mussels and set them aside.
  • Once the broth is done simmering, turn the heat up to medium, and whisk in the heavy cream until combined. Season with salt, pepper and thyme.
  • To serve, divide the mussels between bowls, and ladle the broth over the top. Serve hot with bread on the side to dip in the broth.

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  1. had pretty much this exact recipe, as far as i can tell, at Mexique in Chicago. It was phenomenal and now i can try to make it at home.