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Pasta with broad beans cream and mussels is a simple first course, with very few ingredients. This is the season of fresh, tender and sweet fava beans, which go really well with mussels. A dish that uses the quality of the ingredients to the fullest, starting from the type of pasta.
In fact, pasta is the body’s first source of energy, considered so important that removing it, according to scholars and supporters of the Mediterranean diet, can cause headaches, memory losses and kidney fatigue. This precious food is part of Italians’ the diet since the time of Apicius who in Ancient Rome recounted pasta’s qualities in his “De re coquinaria libri ” and we think pasta should never be removed from our diet. We think that also because it contains an aminoacid, tryptophan, which stimulates the production of serotonin, a neurotransmitter that acts on mood, giving a feeling of well-being and contentment.
The taste and pleasure a food brings do not depend only on its organoleptic properties but also on the colour and aroma. The excellent Italian durum wheat Marco Aurelio by Sgambaro with a seasonal vegetable such as broad beans and colourful mussels is a real panacea for our health and good mood. Let’s Cook!
Ingredients (serves 4)
1 kg fresh mussels
400 g fresh broad beans (without pods) or excellent quality frozen ones
1 clove of garlic
Integral cooking salt
Extra-virgin olive oil
Wash the mussels thoroughly and remove the byssus. Put them all in a pan, add a drizzle of oil, red pepper if you like it, a crushed clove of garlic and cover with a lid. Cook over high heat for just enough to let the mussels open (3/5 minutes). Shell the mussels and filter the cooking liquid through a fine sieve lined with a cloth to remove all impurities.
Blanch the beans, cool in cold water and, with a little patience, remove the outer skin. Transfer them to the cup of your immersion blender with 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, a few crystals of cooking salt and a little of their cooking water. Blend everything into a smooth textured cream.
Bring plenty of water to a boil, add salt, but not too much, because the sauce might be quite salty by itself and cook the Sgambaro Yellow Label Spaghettoni in it.
In a large pan heat the broad bean cream. Drain the pasta “al dente” and put it into the pan with the cream, mix while keeping over high heat adding a few tablespoons of the pasta cooking water and the shelled mussels, letting all flavours blend together. Serve the pasta with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.
Monica Bergomi (aka @lalunasulcucchiaio)