2 lb (1 kg) fresh PEI Mussels
2 Tbsp (30 mL) unsalted butter
2 shallots, finely chopped
1 leek, white and light green parts, sliced crosswise 1/2 inch thick
1 Tbsp (15 mL) curry powder
2 1⁄2 lb butternut squash, peeled seeded and cut into 1/2-inch dice
2 1⁄2 cups (625 mL) chicken stock or low sodium chicken broth
1 cup (250 mL) dry white wine
1⁄2 cup (125 mL) water
2 fresh thyme sprigs
1 pinch fresh ground pepper
1 pinch salt
1 cilantro leaf, for garnish
- Rinse fresh PEI Mussels under tap water. Tap any mussels that are still open and discard any that do not close after being tapped and rinsed. Set aside.
- Melt the butter in a medium sauce-pan. Add the shallots and leek and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, 3-4 minutes.
- Stir in the curry powder and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.
- Add the butternut squash and stock, cover and simmer until the squash is very tender, 20-25 minutes. Remove from the heat and let the soup cool to room temperature. Working in batches, puree the soup in a blender until smooth. Return the soup to the saucepan.
- In another medium saucepan, combine the mussels with the white wine, water and thyme and season generously with pepper. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat.
- Steam the mussels for 3-5 minutes, shaking the pan occasionally; transfer the mussels to a bowl as they open. Remove the mussels from the shells and reserve 12 shells for garnish.
- Carefully pour the mussel-cooking liquid into the soup, leaving behind any sand or grit.
- Reheat the soup and season with salt.
- Place 12 of the mussels in the reserved shells. Add the rest of the mussels to the soup to warm them.
- Ladle the soup into bowls, garnish with cilantro and the mussels in the shells and serve.
Note: The curried soup can be prepared Steps 2 through 4 and refrigerated overnight.