Pasta with mussels and pecorino romano cheese is a particular dish that will make many people turn up their noses but my advice is definitely to try it. In fact, at least on paper, the idea of combining fish and cheese has never made me crazy too, however, I must tell you the truth … mussels with pecorino romano cheese are really good for us. For the realization of the dish instead of the usual spaghetti, this time I opted for the calamarata. The only real difficulty in making the dish is managing the flavor because obviously the mussels and pecorino romano cheese are two rather salty ingredients.
Ingredients for 2 people
200 gr of Calamarata Pasta
1 kg of Mussels
1 clove of Garlic
1 fresh Red Chilli Pepper
1 bunch of Parsley
75 gr of Pecorino Romano Cheese
Coarse Salt to taste
Let’s start cleaning the mussels straight away using a rather efficient method. Put them in a resistant plastic bag together with coarse salt and reseal it so that the mussels rub each other for 2-3 minutes. As if by magic, the mussels will clean themselves perfectly and we will only have to remove the fine linen before rinsing them.
In a pan of adequate size, we will insert all the mussels, raise the flame and, with the lid, we will open them. This will take approximately 5 minutes. In any case, when the mussels begin to open, put them aside immediately and filter the liquid that has come out. Shell them and leave only 4-6 whole which we will use to decorate the dish.
Let’s start cooking the pasta in a pot … today I chose Calamarata, but you can also use other shapes, both long and short, the important thing is that you don’t use salt in cooking.
In the meantime, grate the pecorino romano and add a little of the liquid leaking from the mussels to create a cream.
In a pan we will briefly fry the clove of garlic deprived of the core and cut into strips with a few parsley stalks and fresh chilli over a very low heat. We will then remove the parsley stems. We will add a ladle of pasta cooking water, raise the heat and let it set briefly.
When there are about 4 minutes left until the pasta is cooked, drain it directly into the pan and complete the cooking directly there by adding a ladleful of the liquid escaped from the mussels plus possibly additional pasta cooking water if necessary.
Turn off the heat, add the mussels, the 2-3 finely chopped parsley, the pecorino cream and whisk everything. Eventually we can add a little more cooking water if the dish should not be with the right creaminess. We serve our pasta with mussels and pecorino romano cheese, garnishing each dish with a couple of whole mussels and additional fresh parsley.