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Italian Mussel Stew

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    This stew—reminiscent of the sun-kissed Mediterranean coast—is so good that the first spoonful will convince you to include it in your regular dinner rotation. Spooning the herb sauce over top adds a restaurant-worthy presentation. Be sure to place a plate of sliced crusty bread on the table for soaking up the heavenly broth.

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    4 Tbsp (60 mL) extra-virgin olive oil or camelina oil, divided
    1/4 cup (60 mL) fresh basil
    1/4 cup (60 mL) flat-leaf parsley
    Juice of 1/2 lemon
    1 1/2 lb (750 g) mussels, scrubbed
    1 cup (250 mL) low-sodium chicken broth
    1/2 cup (125 mL) dry white wine
    2 shallots, chopped
    2 garlic cloves, chopped
    1 tsp (5 mL) celery seeds or fennel seeds
    1 - 14 oz (398 mL) can fire-roasted unsalted tomatoes
    2 cups (500 mL) cooked or canned white kidney beans
    1 tsp (5 mL) dried oregano
    1/4 tsp (1 mL) red chili flakes
    1/4 tsp (1 mL) black pepper
    1/3 cup (80 mL) black olives, sliced

    To make herb sauce, using blender or small food processor, blend together 3 Tbsp (45 mL) oil, basil, parsley, and lemon juice. Set aside.

    In large saucepan, combine mussels, chicken broth, and wine. Bring to a simmer, cover, and cook over medium heat until mussels pop open. Discard any mussels that have not opened up. Place colander over large bowl and drain mussels, reserving broth. Remove mussels from shells and set aside.

    Return saucepan to stovetop and heat 1 Tbsp (15 mL) oil over medium heat. Add shallots and garlic; heat for 1 minute. Add celery seeds or fennel seeds; heat for 30 seconds. Add reserved broth, tomatoes, beans, oregano, chili flakes, and pepper. Bring to a simmer and heat for 10 minutes. Stir in mussels and olives and heat through.

    Divide stew among serving bowls and serve topped with herb sauce.

    Serves 4.

    Each serving contains: 458 calories; 30 g protein; 19 g total fat (3 g sat. fat, 0 g trans fat); 32 g total carbohydrates (2 g sugars, 6 g fibre); 416 mg sodium

    source: "International Stews", alive #385, November 2014

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    Italian Mussel Stew

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