Flavored with saffron and white wine, this mussel risotto is perfect for a special occasion.
Makes 10-12 canapé servings
2 1/2 cups water
1 cup fish broth
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 1/2 pounds mussels, scrubbed. Use a brush to scrub mussels under running water. Discard mussels with broken shells or any whose shells remain open after you tap them lightly. Scrape away their beards (black fibrous string) with a knife .
1/4 tsp saffron threads
1 1/2 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp butter
1 onion, onion, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 cups arborio rice
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
Salt to taste
Freshly ground pepper to taste
Bring water and wine to a boil in a large pot over high heat. Add mussels and steam until the shells open, 2 to 3 minutes. Pick out the mussels, discard any that have not opened and reserve the broth. Shell the mussels, set aside. Strain the broth through a filter-lined sieve into a small saucepan. Add fish broth (or water), salt, saffron and keep on back burner at a simmer.
Heat oil and butter in a large saucepan or deep skillet over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and sauté until golden, 3 to 4 minutes. Add rice and stir well to coat. Add your first ladle of hot stock and a nice pinch of salt. Turn down the heat to a simmer and keep stirring until the liquid is absorbed by the rice. Keep adding 1/2 cup of stock at a time, allowing the liquid to be absorbed between each addition, stirring constantly. After about 18 minutes, test the rice. It should be soft but with a slight bite. Carefully stir in the shelled mussels (reserve 10 to 12 to use to top your dishes when plating) and parsley and season with more salt (if needed) and pepper. Carefully plate risotto in individual dishes and top with mussel. Serve warm