Where do you think you are going without a mini cocotte casserole?
Today I love. I definitely love the last collection by Sarah Burton (for Alexander McQueen), inspired by the world of queen bees. I infinitely love the mini cocotte casseroles that I got for my birthday. I love to use them instead of the dishes, because they always emanate magic when you take off the lid. If you still don’t have at least two mini cocotte casseroles in your kitchen and you’re going to get married (who knows), add them to your wedding list. If you are to marriage what my size 38 foot is to a size 36 shoe, then just invent an excuse to ask for them as a gift. For example, I use the technique of the wish list for any event (birthday, name-day, recovery from fever, the operation of wisdom tooth removal, a sprained ankle for having worn unwearable platform shoes…). Well, the casseroles were in my list for almost two years and finally a pity friend of mine decided to buy them and give them to me as a gift, making a significant change to my days in the kitchen (I also love friends who make special gifts!). If you follow this recipe, your soup in cocotte will be a real pleasure for everyone, perfectly hot and very mysterious. Each spoonful will give you a surprise and it will be exactly as attending Alexander McQueen’s fashion show: unexpected and spectacular!
Recipe. FOR 4 PEOPLE
50g (5.3 oz) rice + 500ml (17 fl oz) vegetable stock* + 2.5kg (5.5 lb) ripe tomatoes + 1Kg (2.2 lb) mussels + 10g (0.3 oz) oregano + extra virgin olive oil + 2 dried chilies + salt + freshly ground pepper.
Preheat the oven to 356° F. Wash the tomatoes, cut them in half and place in a baking tray lined with baking paper with the cut side facing up. Season with plenty of oregano, salt, freshly ground black pepper and a drizzle of olive oil. Place in the oven and roast for about 30 minutes or until golden brown. Once ready, remove from oven and blend until the mixture is smooth. Place into a saucepan over medium heat, add the stock, crushed red pepper and cook for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, put the mussels (previously washed with care) in a pan with a little olive oil and chopped garlic and let them open over high heat. Let stand. Bring the tomato soup to a boil, turn down the heat and add the rice. Few minutes before the end of cooking, add the mussels (with the cooking liquid) to complete it. You choose whether to leave the mussels with their shells or to shell them. Serve the hot soup in the mini cocotte casseroles.
Scotti Oro rice maintains good texture even after cooking and is ideal for this recipe.
*RECIPE FOR THE VEGETABLE STOCK: 1 stalk of celery, 2 carrots, 1 onion, parsley, extra virgin olive oil, salt.
Clean up all the vegetables. Peel the carrots, peel the onion and cut everything in half. Put all the vegetables in a large pot full of water, salt and cook over medium heat for 20 minutes. Add a tablespoon of oil and cook over low heat for another 20 minutes. Strain the stock into a large clean saucepan and keep at hand.
Photo Food: Taste of Runway. Photo fashion show: Monica Feudi / Feudiguaineri.com .image courtesy of style.com. Model: Dajana Antic (IMG).