Life Style

Italian mussels with homemade tiramisu and fresh salad

We Dutch love mussels. Every year we even eat more than 10 million kilos of it. Nice such a Dutch pan, but the Italians are also good at it. On the menu: Italian mussels and tiramisu, a weekday feast. You can of course also store it until the weekend. Easy, quick and very tasty!

Italian mussels

  • Main course 3 to 4 persons
  • Preparation approx. 20 minutes


  • 2 kg of mussels
  • 3 slices of bread (sourdough)
  • 2 lemons
  • salt
  • pepper
  • neutral olive oil
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1 medium red onion
  • pinch of dried chili pepper
  • 1 can of diced tomatoes
  • 1 bunch of flat-leaf parsley
  • 125 ml of white wine

Need extra

  • food processor
  • (mussel) pan

Salad with olives and garlic dressing

  • Salad 4 persons
  • Preparation approx. 5 minutes


  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 2 tablespoons of red wine vinegar
  • 6 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 100 g arugula
  • 100 g mixed olives without pits


  • Dessert 4 people
  • Preparation approx. 20 minutes + 2 hours in the refrigerator


  • 50 g dark chocolate (70% cocoa solids)
  • 1 egg
  • 40 g fine granulated sugar
  • 250 g mascarpone
  • salt
  • 175 ml strong coffee / espresso
  • 2 tablespoons of coffee liqueur
  • ½ pack of lady fingers (125 g)
  • 1 tablespoon of cocoa powder

Need extra

  • pan with bowl for the au bain-marie melting of chocolate
  • round dish diameter 18 to 20 cm
  • skewer
  • fine sieve

Making Tiramisu

Lady fingers, cream, strong coffee (or espresso) and chocolate. The basic ingredients for a bellissimo tasty tiramisu. At first glance it seems difficult, but Hugo shows that the Italian classic is easy to do.

Start by mixing the coffee with a nice splash of liqueur in a small bowl. Then pour it into a bowl or deep plate. Dip the lady fingers in the coffee mixture. Don’t leave them in for too long or they will get too squishy.

Tip: do you want to make a child-friendly tiramisu without liqueur (read: alcohol)? For example, choose an alcohol-free hazelnut or vanilla liqueur and replace the espresso for a decaf.

Once you have dipped all lady fingers in the coffee, the egg can be split. To do this, put the egg yolk in a glass bowl and the egg white in another bowl.

First take the bowl with the egg yolk. Beat this together with the sugar and mascarpone. Then beat the egg white with a pinch of salt (for the extra depth of the dessert) in the fat-free bowl until it becomes stiff. Once you’ve done this, fold the egg whites into the mascarpone mixture.

Tip: preferably degrease the bowl where the egg white will come in with lemon. If there is a small piece of fat or yolk in it, you will not get the mixture fluffy later. So it’s better to degrease briefly.

Then melt the chocolate au bain-marie. You do this by placing a glass bowl filled with the chocolate on a pan with hot water. Stir regularly until the chocolate has completely melted.

Grab the shell with lady fingers and pour the mascarpone mixture over it. Fold the mixture out nicely. Drizzle the melted chocolate over the mascarpone and pull so-called ‘swirls’ with a skewer.

Put the dessert in the fridge for at least two hours. Once you serve it, you can top it off with some cocoa to taste.

Making Italian mussels

Cut the bread into chunks and grind it in the food processor together with some lemon zest. Peel and crush a garlic clove. Then heat a good splash of oil in a large frying pan. Possibly add the crushed garlic clove with some salt and pepper and put it on low heat. Here you roast the breadcrumbs. Shake it regularly.

In the meantime, you continue to make the sauce for the mussels. Peel and chop the red onion. Peel and chop the rest of the garlic as well. Heat a dash of olive oil in a high (mussel) pan and fry the onion, garlic and chopped chili pepper.

If you use a dried pepper, just like Hugo, you can easily fry the seeds. The seeds have dried in and make it a bit milder. Stir and deglaze with half of the white wine.

Once you have done this, you can add the tomato cubes including some salt and pepper. Let it reduce on low heat for about 10 to 15 minutes.

Prepare mussels

It’s time to get started with the star player of this dish: the mussels. Wash them thoroughly first. You do this by putting all the mussels in a container with water. You must throw away the floating and open copies.

As soon as you think ‘I have almost no sauce left’, you can turn up the heat and add the washed mussels with the other half of the wine. The moisture will now run out of the mussels, supplementing the amount of sauce. Let the mussels steam gently in their own liquid. Stir well a few times through the mussel pan and then let it go for a while – with the lid on.

Salad with olives and garlic dressing

Finally, Hugo makes a quick salad. To do this, peel and grate the garlic over a bowl. Add the red wine vinegar and add the olive oil while beating. As a final step, the dressing may be mixed with the olives, some olive juice and the arugula if desired. The easiest and fastest is to do this with washed hands.

When the mussels are ready? As soon as they are open they are done and you can serve them in deep plates. This is within minutes. As a finishing touch, cut some parsley and divide this over the plates along with the toasted breadcrumbs. Serve the fresh salad on the side and you’re done.

Enjoy your meal!

This is an article by

Sharmaine Zandbergen


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