Mussels with Avocado-Chili Cream
By Chef Stephen Sands
1. Clean the mussels well, removing the “beard.” Place the next 6 ingredients in a pot, bring to a boil, and reduce by half. Add the mussels, cover and cook for about 3-4 minutes until they have opened. (Discard any that do not open.) Strain the liquid through a fine chinois, reserving ½-cup of the broth.
2. Place the avocado, chili, and lime juice in a food processor and process until smooth and creamy. Add enough of the reserved liquid from the mussels to make the puree. Pass through a fine sieve. Blend in the creme fraiche, and season with salt and pepper.
3. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the mussels to a large bowl to cool. With a paring knife, remove the mussels from the shells, reserving half of the shell for each. Place the mussels back into the shells and transfer to a baking sheet. Drop a generous dollop of the avocado-chili cream atop of each.
4. Arrange on each plate, and serve.
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