Modern Venice: Perfectly steamed mussels (Cozze Serenissime)
A unique appetizer that continues cooking right in front of you! The mussels are steamed for one minute in the pressure cooker and served on a bed of radicchio and spinach that wilts in the briny, hot, rose’ wine broth while you are eating the mussels. The scent is that of a glass of wine at a foggy Venitian outdoor restaurant on the canal. A grilled baguette is the perfect accompaniment for picking up and left-over broth.
I could not refuse a personal invitation exteded by Giallo Zafferano, the “Epicurious” of Italy, to enter their “Venice on a Plate” recipe innovation contest for a dish made with ingredents found and grown in the Venitian lagoon!
Pressure Cooker Recipe: Perfectly steamed mussels (Cozze Serenissime)
- A New Venitian Dish form your pressure cooker
Note, this recipe has no salt. The mussels open during cooking and release the salty water into the steaming liquid below.
2 lbs or 1k of Mussels, cleaned and de-bearded
1 White Onion, chopped
1 Small head of Radicchio, cut into thin strips
1 lb. of Baby Spinach
1 clove of Garlic, smashed
1/2 cup of a dry Rose’ wine, or a dry white wine
1/2 cup of water
To clean the mussels:
Right before cooking, hold the mussel with the round end towards you and pull on the little “beard” sliding it in the opening toward you as you pull. Then, clean the shells by scrubbing with a nylon brush or scrubby sponge (with no detergent residue).
Prepare the dish:
Prepare individual deep appetizer plates by laying a layer of baby spinach and radicchio strips and set aside.
Prepare the mussels, by arranging them in the steamer basket, and set aside.
In the pre-heated pressure cooker, on medium heat with the top off, add a swirl of olive oil. Add the onion and garlic clove. When those have softened, de-glaze with red wine and quickly add the steamer basket (or trivet and steamer basket) with the mussels. Close and lock the pressure cooker.
Pressure cook at LOW pressure for just one minute.
When the cooking time is up, open the pressure cooker using the cold water quick-release method – bring the pan to the sink and run cold water on it making sure not to cover any of the valves. For electric pressure cookers, cook for only one minute and then release pressure using the Automatic Release method – releasing pressure from the top by pushing a button or twisting a lever – reserve the steaming liquid! This is now your briny broth.
Divide the mussels between appetizer plates and serve immediately. At the table, ladle the hot steaming broth over them.
Prep time: 5 min
Cook time: 6 min
Total time: 11 min