Mussel and tomato pasta

MUSSELTHIS flavourful pasta dish for mussel, fennel and tomato spaghetti with pangrattato serves four.


500g mussels, without shells and roughly chopped

Olive oil

1 garlic clove, thinly sliced

2 fennel bulbs, tough outer layer removed and sliced very thinly, any fronds reserved

1 tsp fennel seeds

A pinch of dried chilli

4 fresh or tinned plum tomatoes, roughly chopped

A splash of white wine

A handful of parsley, leaves chopped

1 x 500g packet spaghetti

For the pangrattato:

Olive oil

75g fresh breadcrumbs

4 garlic cloves, unpeeled


Make the pangrattato first by heating a large frying pan and adding a splash of olive oil. Fry the breadcrumbs and whole garlic cloves in the oil until darkened and crisp, then drain them on a piece of kitchen paper and allow to cool.

In a large frying pan, heat the oil and gently fry the garlic and fennel slices until the garlic becomes sticky. Add the fennel seeds and chilli. Cook for one minute, then stir in the mussels and tomatoes before pouring in the wine. Simmer for three minutes to slightly reduce the sauce. Stir through the parsley and any fennel fronds. Check the seasoning.

Cook the spaghetti in a pan of salted boiling water according to the instructions on the packet. Stir the pasta into the sauce, mixing well so that every strand is coated, then transfer to plates and top with the pangrattato before serving. – The Telegraph

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