Keralan mussels with ginger and chilli

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


Appears in

Food and Travels: Asia

Food and Travels

By Alastair Hendy

Published 2004

  • About

You can turn this into something creamy-soupy - moules mariniere meets India - by bubbling in a dash of coconut milk after you’ve turned through the mussels.


  • 1 kg net mussels
  • 2 shallots, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 3 red mild chillies, deseeded and roughly chopped
  • 4 cm piece fresh root ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
  • small bunch of fresh coriander, chopped


Rinse and scrub the mussels. Discard any that remain open. Fry the shallots and garlic with salt and pepper in the oil until the shallots start to pick up flecks of colour. Stir in the paprika, half the chillies and half the ginger and fry for a further minute. Add a dash of water and reduce to a paste-like sauce. Add the mussels, and the remaining chilli and ginger and turn to coat the mussels with spice mixture. Cover, turn up the heat and steam-fry for 2 minutes, or until the mussels have opened. Discard those that remain shut. Dish up with lots of chopped coriander strewn over.