Choros a la Chalaca
This take on the classic Peruvian seafood dish of steamed mussels is always a hit at Danielle Bell and Pablo Osorio’s de Porres Dinner Series events. The bright, fresh topping is a kind of salsa criolla, a Peruvian red onion relish with chile and lime. Arrange the mussels on a platter cup side up for a cocktail snack that’s easy to grab one-handed. At their parties Danielle and Pablo sometimes nestle the mussels into coarse salt, like they’re sitting in sand, to keep the cups upright.
- 2 garlic cloves 1 smashed, 1 finely grated
- 1½ tsp. Diamond Crystal or ¾ tsp. Morton kosher salt divided
- 1 lb. mussels scrubbed, debearded
- 1 small plum tomato finely chopped
- ½ habanero chile finely chopped
- 3 Tbsp. finely chopped red onion
- 1 Tbsp. fresh lime juice
- 2 Tbsp. cilantro leaves plus sprigs for serving
- Bring smashed garlic, 1 tsp. Diamond Crystal or ½ tsp. Morton kosher salt, and 3 cups water to a simmer in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add mussels and cook, uncovered, until opened, about 3 minutes. As mussels open, use tongs to transfer them to a medium bowl; discard any mussels that remain closed after 5 minutes or so. Chill mussels 15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, stir grated garlic, tomato, chile, onion, lime juice, 2 Tbsp. cilantro, and remaining ½ tsp. Diamond Crystal or ¼ tsp. Morton kosher salt in a small bowl.
- Remove and discard top shells from mussels. Arrange mussels on a platter; top each with a spoonful of salsa. Scatter cilantro sprigs over.
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