Peppered mussels, Italian recipe from Campania

impepata cozze ricetta

If you’re in the South of Italy, especially Apulia and Campania, during summer you will have the opportunity to taste a special dish in every restaurant: the “impepata di cozze” or peppered steamed mussel.

A simple recipe which is part of the Italian culinary tradition and that can be made at home just following a few steps: all you need, besides mussels, is garlic, extra virgin olive oil, parsley and a lot of pepper. The more the better.

You need to use good and juice mussels and paying attention to their shells: if they’re broken do not buy the mussels because they can be old.

What you need for 4 portions

2 Kg of mussels
4 cloves of garlic
Extra virgin olive oil
Black pepper

How to make a perfect impepata di cozze

1. Wash the mussels by removing all impurities from the shells using a brush with semi-rigid bristles. Rinse under cold water and then place them in a large saucepan with the peeled garlic and some extra virgin olive oil.
2. Cook the mussels over medium heat until they have opened completely and then, at the end of cooking, add parsley in abundance after finely chopped it, and pepper (the more the better) .
3. Serve only the mussels opened with all the shell and sprinkled with their cooking liquid, with a slice of lemon and toasted bread as an accompaniment.

Preparation time: 20 minutes

impepata cozze

Results: simple, fast and suitable for lunches and dinners. To be eaten with your hands!

Second option : You can also avoid the garlic for a lighter taste or instead of cooking the mussels and the garlic together, you can slightly deep fry the garlic into the oil, then remove it and cook the mussels in the same oil.

Advice: once ready, the peppered mussels should have to be eaten right away. If they will last you need to remove the mussels from their shells, place them in an airtight container with their cooking juice and put in the refrigerator using al of them the next day for a fish risotto together with some clams.


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