Lucía Freitas: The starred chef of Santiago de Compostela

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Galician Mussels in Citrus Escabèche with Red Lentil Soup (for 4 people)
By chef Lucía Freitas (adapted for BBC Travel)

Ingredients for the mixed dish:

20 citrus escabèche mussels (see sub-recipe below)
300g red lentil soup (see below for sub-recipe)
120g baby carrots
80g of bok choy
40g grapefruit wedges
40g blood orange wedges
Coriander leaves, carrot leaves and mini basil (for garnish)
Orange zest, freshly zested (for garnish)

Mussels with citrus escabeche

Ingredients:

2 leeks
3 carrots
3 yellow onions
1 liter olive oil (not extra virgin)
1 head garlic, halved
1 lemon (zest and juice)
10 black peppercorns
4 green cardamom pods
1 stalk lemongrass, lightly crushed to release flavor
2 makrut lime leaves
15 g chopped fresh ginger
15 g chopped fresh galangal
150ml dry white wine
250ml apple cider vinegar
25 g chilli (smoked paprika)
500g cleaned mussels

Instructions:

Julienne the leeks, carrots and onions. Sauté the vegetables in oil for 20 minutes over low heat with the garlic, lemon (zest and juice), pepper, cardamom, lemongrass, lime leaves, ginger and galangal. Once the vegetables have been poached, pour in the wine and vinegar to stop the cooking, and bring everything to a boil. After boiling, remove from the heat and stir in the pimentón. Leave the mixture to rest overnight in the refrigerator.

The next day, strain the mixture through cheesecloth, reserving the vegetables and escabeche liquid separately. Steam the mussels to open them and extract them from the shells. Add the mussels to the escabeche liquid and let them rest in the refrigerator for at least 24 hours.

Red lentil soup

Ingredients:

300g red lentils
1 liter of vegetable broth
2 tablespoons turmeric powder
1 bay leaf
1 tomato
1 yellow onion
2 cloves garlic
35 g chopped fresh ginger
1 tablespoon of cumin seeds
1 tablespoon mustard seed
1 dried guindilla pepper
1 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped
1 tablespoon pimenton (smoked paprika)
1 tablespoon garam masala
1 tbsp Yondu sauce (a naturally fermented, gluten- and lactose-free seasoning made from soy and vegetable broth; you can substitute with half the amount of soy sauce)

Instructions:

Cook the lentils in the broth, adding the turmeric and bay leaf. Finely chop the tomato, onion and garlic and sauté them in olive oil like a sofrito until lightly caramelized. Add the ginger, cumin, mustard, guindilla and coriander, and cook over low heat for a few minutes. Stir in the pimentón, garam masala and Yondu sauce, then add the lentils and broth. Let the mixture cook for another 10 minutes over low heat so that the spices release their flavors, taking care not to burn them. Blend everything in a blender, strain and reserve the soup for the dressing of the final dish.

Assembly and presentation of the final mixed dish:

Purée the reserved vegetables (those that have been drained from the escabèche) until creamy. Briefly cook the carrots and bok choy in a skillet or steamer and season with some of the escabeche liquid. Drizzle ¼ of the vegetable puree into each dish, top with carrots, bok choy and mussels. Add a few slices of grapefruit and blood orange, as well as cilantro, carrot leaves and mini basil leaves. Add a little freshly zested orange to each dish, then spoon a quarter of the red lentil soup into each dish.

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