Chefs' Recipes

XO mussels

Stir-fried mussels shine bright in this fragrant XO sauce.

By Jo Barrett
  • 20 mins preparation
  • 1 hr cooking
  • Serves 4 - 6
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These stir-fried mussels are tossed through an impressive XO sauce, before being served with fresh spring onions and crusty baguette.
"Mussels area great sustainanable option over pipis and go so well with XO," says Barrett. Substitute dried mushrooms for the trout in the XO if you prefer.


  • 2 tbsp grapeseed oil
  • 180 gm XO sauce
  • 2 kg mussels
  • 60 ml (¼ cup) Shaoxing wine
  • 50 gm butter, optional
  • 1 lime, juice
  • Sliced spring onions, to serve
  • Baguette, to serve
XO sauce:
  • 2 onions, coarsely chopped
  • 100 gm garlic cloves
  • 70 gm ginger, coarsely chopped
  • 400 gm long red chilli, seeds removed
  • 400 ml grapeseed oil
  • 1 smoked rainbow trout (about 350gm), skin and bones removed, flesh flaked
  • 3 tsps tamari or to taste
  • 2 tsp brown rice vinegar or to taste


  • 1
    For XO sauce, place onion, garlic, ginger and chilli in a food processor and process until finely chopped. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add chilli mixture; cook, stirring continuously until bubbling (6-8 minutes). Reduce heat to very low, and cook, stirring frequently, until mixture darkens (40-45 minutes). Stir in trout; cook, stirring frequently until trout has broken down (10-12 minutes). Stir in tamari and vinegar and season to taste. XO sauce will keep refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 12 months.
  • 2
    Heat oil in a large saucepan with a lid over high heat. Add 180gm XO and stir-fry until fragrant (30 seconds-1 minute). Add mussels and toss to coat. Add Shaoxing and bring to the boil, cover with lid and cook, shaking pan, until mussels open (5-6 minutes); discard unopened mussels. Strain mussels into a fine sleeve. Return sauce to pan and cook until slightly thickened. Remove from heat and stir in butter and lime juice.
  • 3
    To serve, place mussels in a large serving bowl and pour over sauce. Scatter with spring onions and serve with baguette on the side.