Not much, but a lot of mussels

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I love flavour and can sometimes get a bit obsessed with adding lots of different ingredients to things to make them as exciting as possible. However, millions of ingredients is not always what is needed and sometimes I need to remind myself that using just a few ingredients can give you just as much to savour.

This summer we visited the Isle of Mull and, on the drive to the campsite, stopped at a harbour to buy some fresh mussels… with only a few ingredients in a cool box in the back of the car, we cooked the mussels simply and they were beautiful.

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Mussels with Tomatoes and Chorizo (serves 3-4)

2kg mussels

½ onion

1/3 of a horseshoe of chorizo

2 or 3 tomatoes

Salt and pepper

Chunky bread (to serve)

  1.  Wash the mussels thoroughly and pull off their beards and barnacles. If any are open and don’t close when tapped, discard these.
  2. Chop the chorizo into chunks and fry in a little oil until the edges start to crisp and set aside.
  3. Add the onion to the pan with the chorizo juice and soften. Chop the tomatoes and add them to the pan. Season with a little salt and pepper.
  4. After a couple of minutes of cooking the tomatoes, add the mussels to the pan. Cover with a lid and give them a good shake to mix everything up. Cook on a medium heat for about 4 minutes.
  5. Take off the lid and check to see if the mussels have opened. If they have not, re-cover, shake, and leave them a little longer. If they look good to go, then add the chorizo and stir it in.
  6. Serve with some good chunky bread. This will be excellent to mop up all the juices.

Although I note that this serves 3-4 people, it would be, and was, a sizeable feast for two campers with good appetites!

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