Spanish Mussel Gratin
Yields: 6-8 servings.
- 2 lbs Mussels, scrubbed and bearded
- 4 strips Bacon, medium dice
- 1 tbsp Olive oil
- 1 small Onion, finely diced
- 1 Red pepper, finely diced
- 2 Garlic cloves, finely minced
- ½ tsp Smoked paprika
- ½ cup Dry vermouth or white wine
- ½ cup Breadcrumbs
- ½ cup Parsley
- ½ cup Finely grated pecorino romano cheese
- Rinse mussels and discard any broken or open mussels.
- In a large pot with a lid bring ½ cup of water to a boil, once boiling add mussels. Cover and cook mussels for 2-4 minutes, shaking the pot to stir the mussels a few times. Transfer the mussels to a bowl to cool. Discard any unopened mussels. Discard half the shell of each mussel and detach each mussel from shell and place back in. Place mussel halves on a scrunched up piece of tin foil to keep shells steady on a large baking tray.
- Heat a large pan over medium high heat, once hot, add bacon and cook for 4-6 minutes until it is crispy and brown. With a slotted spoon remove bacon from pan. Reduce the heat to medium, add onion and red pepper, cook for 3-4 minutes, add smoked paprika, cook for 1 minute. Deglaze pan with vermouth and cook for 2 minutes, stir in reserved bacon. Remove from heat.
- In a small bowl toss breadcrumbs with parsley, pecorino and 1 tbsp olive oil, season with salt and pepper.
- Top each mussel with a spoonful of the bacon pepper mixture and then sprinkle over breadcrumbs.
- Heat broiler to high and arrange the oven rack 4 inches from the top coils. Broil for 2-3 minutes until the breadcrumbs are golden and the mussels are hot.
- Mussels can be assembled in advance and kept in the refrigerator and then broiled just before serving.