Creamy Mussel Soup

Prep: 35 minutes | Cook: 45 mins | Yield: 5-6 servings


Ingredients  

  • 5 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 fennel bulb, chopped
  • 2 rib celery, chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest
  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 3 plum tomatoes, chopped
  • ⅓ cup tomato sauce
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 2 lbs. fresh mussels, scrubbed and debearded
  • ½ lb. medium-sized fresh shrimp, peeled and deveined, heads on
  • ¼ pound prosciutto or other flavorful ham, chopped (optional)
  • ¼ cup fresh cilantro, coarsely chopped 3/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • salt and black pepper to taste
  • 1 baguette, halved

Directions

Baguette:
Heat the broiler. Put the 2 halves slices bread on a baking sheet and brush up side with the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil, sprinkle garlic powder and broil until golden brown, about 5 minutes in all.

In a large pot, heat the oil and butter over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, fennel, celery, bay leaf, orange zest, and turmeric. Cook covered, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are soft, about 15 minutes. On the side, stir in the flour for 1 minute. Add the tomato sauce, tomatoes, wine, and cream and continue simmering for 5 minutes.

Add the mussels to the cooking liquid. Cover and cook until the mussels begin to open, about 5 minutes. Add the shrimp, ham (if using), parmesan cheese and cilantro. Simmer over medium heat until shrimp are just cooked through, and the mussels are completely open, stirring gently, about 3-5 minutes longer (discard any mussels that do not open). Season the soup to taste with salt and ground black pepper. Serve hot with the toasted baguette.

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