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Tomato Mussels with Penne

Yield: Makes 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 454g of penne or your favourite pasta
  • 1 tsp of salt
  • a big splash of olive oil
  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 1 head  of garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1-28 oz can of whole tomatoes
  • 1 cup of any red wine
  • 1 Tbsp or so of dried oregano
  • 5 lbs of fresh mussels
  • 1 bunch of fresh Italian parsley, chopped
  • 1 bunch of fresh oregano, chopped
  • 2 green onions, chopped

Method

  1. Match a large pot with a tight fitting lid. Splash in the olive oil over medium heat then quickly sauté the onions and garlic until they lightly brown and smell delicious, a minute or two. Pour in the tomatoes, taking the time to crush each one with your fingers. Splash in the wine and toss in the oregano. Bring the works to a simmer then pile the mussels on top of the sauce. Lower the heat to a simmer, cover and continue cooking, steaming the mussels open. They’re done when all the mussels have opened and released their briny broth, about 10 minutes. Discard any unopened ones.
  2. Meanwhile, cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until al dente, tender yet chewy, 8 to 10 minutes. Drain well but do not rinse. Return the steaming hot pasta to the pot, pour in the sauce and stir together. Portion the pasta into bowls, top with the mussels and the all-important broth, then garnish with the freshly chopped herbs. Serve and share.