24 green-lipped mussels on the half-shell
4 kaffir lime leaves (or 15g dried)
4 lemongrass stems
2 tbsp each ginger paste, garlic paste, green chilli curry paste and chopped spring onion tops
1 tsp ground turmeric
50g palm sugar
1 tsp each sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tsp belachan (or other shrimp paste)
400g can coconut milk, chilled
2 spring onions, chopped
259ml carton coconut cream
300ml hot fish stock or vegetable stock
Large handful of fresh coriander, torn
Rice or noodles (optional)
Step 1) Plump up the mussels in hand-hot water while you prepare the soup.
Step 2) Snip and discard the hard central ridge of the lime leaves, then shred finely.
Step 3) Using a rolling pin, bash the lemongrass stems to soften. Halve lengthwise, reserving 4 halves, and scissor-snip remaining stems finely. Put the snipped lime leaves and lemongrass, the 3 pastes, spring onion tops, turmeric, palm sugar, seasonings and belachan into a food processor and whizz to a paste.
Step 4) Heat a chunk of the chilled, solid coconut mass from the top of the coconut milk in a wok until it sizzles. Add the paste mixture. Cook, stirring for 2 minutes, then add the chopped spring onions, remaining coconut milk and the coconut cream and simmer for 1 minute. Add the hot stock
and simmer for 3 minutes.
Step 5) Once hot, drain the broth, add the mussels in their shells and the lemongrass lengths. Serve topped with torn coriander adding or serving with rice or noodles, if liked.