Bar Alto’s famous mussels
1 kg Spring Bay black mussels (scrubbed)
50 ml extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon garlic (finely chopped)
1 teaspoon fresh bird eye chili (minced)
150 ml dry white wine
2 ripe roma tomatoes (blanched and diced)
500 g good quality Italian canned tomato pulp
1/4 cup chopped Italian flat leaf parsley (loosely packed)
1/4 cup chopped fresh Genovese basil (loosely packed)
Sea salt to taste
Heat a heavy bottom cast iron pot until very hot.
Add extra virgin olive oil, mussels, garlic and chili in quick succession and shake well.
Pour in white wine and cover with a tight fitting lid, shaking occasionally.
The mussels will open in less than a minute. Strain into a colander, and reserve the cooking juices.
Arrange the mussels in a serving dish; any unopened mussels can be opened with a small knife.
Return the juices to the pot. Add tomato pulp and bring to a boil, then add the diced tomatoes, parsley and basil.
Check seasoning (mussels’ juices are naturally salty and you may not need to add any salt).
Serve with a good drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and toasted ciabatta.