Wednesday, 17 November 2004

Sabaw ng Tahong

That's "Mussels Soup" in English. My husband insisted that he wanted mussels with soup last weekend. He scoured all the nearby supermarkets for fresh mussels. Fortunately, on the third one he visited he got the very last kilo of mussels sitting on the shelf. I already cooked mussels with wine before so I decided to try this traditional Filipino recipe. It is sort of like the Tinolang Manok substituting the chicken with the shellfish. Problem is I did not have anymore chili tops (talbos ng sili) so I used a chili itself but finely minced. It was a success with the hot soup warming us up in a chilly evening. Happy husband slurping away. He actually finished it all by himself.

Sabaw ng Tahong
(Mussels Soup)

1 kg  fresh tahong (mussels)
1 Tbsp oil
2 tsp minced garlic
1 medium onion - chopped
1 inch square ginger - peeled and julliened
2 tsp patis (fish sauce)
4 cups rice water* or water
a bunch of talbos ng sili (chili tops) or finely minced chili
  1. Put the mussels in a bowl of cold water. Discard ones that float, whose shells are broken or open. Scrape off barnacles from the shells and pull the hairy beards. Change the water several times and keep it under water until you cook them.
  2. Heat oil in a pan. Saute garlic in low heat until light brown. Add onion and saute until translucent (about 5 minutes). Add ginger and cook for about 3 minutes.
  3. Add patis, cook briefly, add rice water; bring to boil.
  4. Drain mussels from the cold water and tip in the pot once the rice water boils. Cover and cook in high heat for 4 minutes.
  5. Mix in the chili tops or minced chili. Cover again and cook for very briefly for around 10 seconds. Remove from heat. Serve.
*Rice water - set aside the water mixture that you used for washing rice before cooking it. So essentially you have to cook rice first before cooking this dish.

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