Rice, Potatoes and Mussels

Rice, Potatoes and Mussels

By our friend Debora’s Pugliese aunt.

You might enjoy this recipe on our tours in Puglia or, try it at home, using just a few fresh ingredients as our friend Debora’s aunt does!


Ingredients for 4 people:

  • 600 grams (~1.5 pounds) of mussels
  • ¼ cup of washed and chopped up onion
  • 400 grams ( ~1 pound) of white rice
  • 4 to 5 medium potatoes
  • ½ cup of grated Pecorino cheese
  • ¼ cup of washed and chopped up parsley
  • ½ cup of EVOO
  • Water (see recipe for quantity)
  • A pinch of salt


  • Wash the mussels (if needed, pull the "beard" off each one. Also, remember to discard any that are already open)
  • Put the mussels in a pot over medium heat and cook for 5 minutes or until they have all opened and released the water trapped inside (this is your mussel broth)
  • Remove immediately from the stove and drain the mussels keeping the mussel broth (if you like, taste it and dream of the sea!)
  • Wash, peel and slice the potatoes (approx. ¼ of inch thick)
  • In a pot start to drizzle some EVOO, then add a layer of sliced potatoes. Then sparsely add the mussels (with shells or not, it is up to you)
  • Sprinkle with parsley, then chopped onion, then grated pecorino cheese  
  • Finally, sprinkle with some rice and drizzle some more EVOO
  • Add a second layer, starting again from the potatoes and after all the other ingredients, finish with more EVOO drizzled on top
  • Now add water, with a glass of mussel broth, to cover all of the ingredients with at least an inch over the top
  • Cook on the stove over medium flame for at least 30 minutes or until the water has cooked down 


Serve this stew-like dish, which should have the consistency like a lasagna, in a shallow dish or small plate. Buon appetito!


ps the picture taken in a restaurant in Puglia features a version of this recipe made also with cherry tomatoes 






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