Food and Wine pairing of the week: NZ Greenshell mussels with tomato, pesto and bacon sauce

Posted by & filed under News, Recipe of the Week.

Did someone say mussels? Yes please! This delicious meal packs an amazing flavoursome punch. Impress your house guests with this beautiful serving at the dining table.



1 kg (2.2 lbs) New Zealand Greenshell mussels – frozen half shell (thawed) or live mussels scrubbed and de-bearded

150mls Olive Oil

1 large Garlic Clove – minced

1 Onion – roughly chopped

3 Ripe Roma Tomatoes – chopped (substitute would be tinned Roma Tomatoes)

250mls White Wine

1 Tablespoon Basil Pesto

3 rashers Streaky Bacon (remove rind)

150gms (5.3 oz) Feta (cows feta crumbly style)

2 Tablespoons Fresh Basil – rough chopped

1 Tablespoon Fresh Italian Parsley – rough chopped

Salt and Black Pepper to season

1 Baguette (French Stick)


1. Portion the baguette & rub with the garlic & then brush with olive oil. Lightly toast & keep warm to serve with the mussels.

2. In a heavy based sauce pan sauté roughly chopped bacon in the olive oil until crispy then sauté onions & garlic in the bacon oil until soft & transparent.

3. Add tomatoes & half the wine. Allow sauce to come up to the boil, and then simmer for 8-10 minutes to reduce the sauce. To finish the sauce, season to taste & stir in pesto, remove the sauce from the pot & store in a suitable container.

4. Wash & reuse the heavy based sauce pan, place on the heat with a lid until very hot, place the mussels into the pot with the remaining wine, then cover and steam. If cooking live mussels, steam for 4-5 minutes, shaking the pot a few times during. The mussels are cooked when the shells open, remove from the heat and discard any mussels that don’t open. For frozen half shell mussels (thawed), steam for 2-3 minutes until warmed through.

5. Return the tomato sauce to the pan with the mussels, allowing the sauce to come back up to boil, correct the seasoning & just before serving add the fresh herbs.

Portion the mussels out into bowls and divide out the sauce. Next crumble the feta over the mussels. Finish with warm baguette & serve while hot.

Seves 4.

Wine pairing – Bald Hills Last Light Central Otago Reisling

Fresh seafood combines beautifully with this wine.  Mussels are a great match with their richness and slight sweetness.