Chef's Recipes

Poached mussels, tomato, saffron and basil

Australian Gourmet Traveller recipe for poached mussels, tomato, saffron and basil.

By Richard Purdue
  • 20 mins preparation
  • 10 mins cooking plus cooling and resting
  • Serves 6
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Poached mussels, tomato, saffron and basil


  • 180 ml dry rosé
  • 1 pinch saffron threads
  • 1 kg large black mussels, scrubbed, debearded
  • 1 cup (loosely packed) watercress
Tomato dressing
  • 1 large ripe tomato, deseeded and finely diced
  • 1 spring onion, thinly sliced into rings
  • 1½ tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp lemon juice


  • 1
    Bring wine and saffron to the boil in a saucepan over medium-high heat, add mussels, cover and cook, shaking pan occasionally, until they start to open (2-3 minutes). Remove mussels from pan as they open, remove mussel meat from shells and reserve. Strain and reserve cooking liquid.
  • 2
    For tomato dressing, combine tomato and spring onion in a bowl, add 30ml reserved mussel liquor, oil and lemon juice, and stir to combine. Pour tomato dressing over mussels, scatter with watercress and allow flavours to infuse (15 minutes) before serving.