Mussels with mango curry sauce

Mussels are ideal for the barbecue because they take on a delicate smokey flavour and are self-timing – when they open, they’re done

Ingredients (Serves 4-6 as an appetiser)

  • 2kg/1⁄2 lb fresh mussels (about 45-50), cleaned and beards removed
  • 4 slices French bread, about 2.5cm/1in thick
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • 4 tbsp roughly chopped fresh coriander
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the mango curry sauce

  • 100g/4oz unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 tbsp peeled and finely chopped fresh root ginger
  • 1 tbsp good quality curry powder
  • 100ml/4fl oz mango juice (or use equal parts orange juice and pineapple juice)
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh chilli

First make the sauce. Put the butter, ginger and curry powder in a shallow foil tray that is large enough to hold all the mussels and sturdy enough to withstand the heat of the fire. Place the tray on the grill grid near the fire – not directly over it – and cook for about 2 minutes, stirring a few times until the butter is melted and the mixture is fragrant. Add the mango juice and chilli, let the sauce come to a simmer then slide the tray to the side of the grill away from the direct heat of the hot coals.

Put the cleaned mussels directly on the grill grid over the hot coals and cook until they pop open (6-8 minutes). Use tongs to transfer the mussels to the foil tray with the sauce as they are done.

Discard any that do not open.

While the mussels are cooking, arrange the bread slices around the perimeter of the grill and lightly toast – about 2 minutes each side. When all the mussels are in the foil tray, stir them around to coat with the sauce then sprinkle with the lime juice and coriander and season. Serve them out of the foil tray, along with the toasted bread to mop up the juices.

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