Mussels Cataplana Style.jpg

Mussels Cataplana Style

Don, MA (


  • 3 strips thick bacon

  • 1 medium onion

  • 3 cloves garlic

  • 1/4 - 1 hot pepper (to taste)

  • 1/4 cup dry white wine

  • Parsley

  • 2 cups sliced Portuguese sausage - half chourico, half linguica, or all of one or the other

  • 1 1/2 cups chopped tomatoes (preferably Roma)

  • 1 red sweet pepper (I prefer Italian cooking peppers), sliced into strips

  • 8 oz bottle of clam juice or fish stock

  • 2 lb mussels

  • 3 scallions, white and edible green part, sliced into rings


  1. Saute the bacon in a deep pot. Remove when crisp; break into small pieces and reserve.

  2. Pour off all but 1 TBS bacon fat.

  3. Increase the heat to medium high.

  4. Slice the chourico lengthwise and cut into half-rounds. Slice the linguica into rounds. Add to the pot and stir till slightly browned.

  5. Slice the onion into strips, add to pot, and cook until lightly browned.

  6. Add the red peppers and cook for a minute or two until slightly softened (they'll cook more as you go).

  7. Add the garlic and hot pepper and saute for 30 seconds or until fragrant.

  8. Add the wine, turn the heat to high, and reduce until almost gone, scraping up the browned bits from the bottom of the pot.

  9. Add the tomatoes and cook for five minutes on high while you are washing the mussels.

  10. Add the clam juice and bring to a boil.

  11. Add the mussels carefully. Cover and cook the mussels over medium high heat until they are all open. Depending on the size, it may take anywhere from eight to 20 minutes.

  12. To serve, stir in the chopped parsley and scallions and crumbled bacon. Pour into a large bowl, covering with the broth, or serve in individual bowls, making sure to pour some of the broth over the mussels.