This summer dish hails from southern Italy, a region with distinctive flavors that tend to be lighter and slightly spicier than in other parts of the country. Sweet, fresh San Marzano tomatoes make a wonderful, flavorful sauce for this recipe, but any simple canned tomato sauce will work as well. Aside from this, fresh ingredients are the key to making excellent spaghetti with mussels: fresh garlic, parsley, and of course, mussels are all a must.
Spaghetti pasta with mussels is a classic and a perfect end of summer, al fresco dinner. I made it today in the classic tradition of freshness and simplicity. When in Italy, we have our fishmonger who provides the freshest seafood possible. Here in America, you have to make sure that all of your seafood is fresh off the boat. The mussels must be alive and smell like the ocean, or don’t bother to make this dish.
Throughout Italy, there are a few slight alterations of this recipe, but today I made Nonna’s traditional Sicilian dish, which is common along the coast of Sicily. The freshest mussels, garlic, white wine, and a little bit of tomato and fresh parsley, is all that makes this dish delicious.
Simple, sweet and refreshing, spaghetti with mussels is one of my favorite summer classics, and I hope it becomes one of yours too!