• 2 lbs fresh mussels, cleaned and debearded
• 1 can (14 oz) full-fat coconut milk
• 2 cups cherry tomatoes
• 4 cups vegetable broth
• 2 stalks lemongrass, bruised and finely chopped
• 2-3 fresh thai lime leaves torn into pieces
• 1 medium-sized eggplant, diced into small cubes
• 3 cloves garlic, minced
• 1 small onion, finely chopped
• 1 thumb-sized piece of ginger, grated
• 1 jalapeño, sliced
• 1 serrano, sliced
• 2 tbsp fish sauce
• 2 tbsp fresh lime juice
• 2 tbsp butter
• Salt to taste
• Perilla leaves, chiffonaded
• Thai basil leaves, torn
• Green onions, sliced
• Caviar lime or lime wedges
• Baguette, for serving
1. In a large pot or deep pan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until translucent. Stir in garlic, ginger, and lemongrass. Cook until aromatic, then add the jalapeño and serrano peppers.
2. Add the lime leaves, fish sauce, lime juice, eggplant, and cherry tomatoes.
3. Pour in the vegetable broth followed by the coconut milk. Bring the mixture to a boil and let it simmer until the eggplant is tender and the cherry tomatoes have burst.
4. Add the cleaned mussels. Cover the pot and let it simmer for about 7-10 minutes, or until the mussels have opened up. Discard any mussels that do not open.
5. Ladle the mussels and broth into bowls. Garnish with chiffonaded perilla leaves, torn Thai basil, sliced green onions, and a touch of caviar lime or lime wedges. Serve immediately with crusty bread.
6. Enjoy with a crusty baguette!