Mussels and Snapper Steamed in Coconut Milk with Chili and Lemon Grass

posted: 06/30/10
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Mussels and Snapper Steamed in Coconut Milk with Chili and Lemon Grass

Take Home Chef, Episode 27: Jackie's Menu


  • 2-inch/4-cm piece fresh lemon grass
  • 2 tablespoons/30 ml olive oil
  • 24 black mussels, scrubbed and de-bearded
  • 2 red jalapeno chili peppers, finely chopped
  • 1-inch/2-cm piece fresh ginger, peeled, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 4 baby bok choy, halved lengthwise, leaves separated
  • 1/4 cup/60 ml sweet white wine (such as Gew?rztraminer)
  • 1 young coconut, flesh roughly chopped, water reserved
  • Four 6-ounce/180-g red snapper fillets
  • 1/2 cup/120 ml coconut milk
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 bunch fresh cilantro


  1. Using the dull side of a large sharp knife, pound the lemon grass to break it apart and help release its aroma. Place a large wok over medium heat and add the oil. Add the mussels, lemon grass, chilies, ginger and garlic to the wok. Toss the wok to mix all ingredients and then cover the wok. This will allow the steam to build up in the wok and cook the mussels.
  2. Add the bok choy, white wine, coconut water, and coconut flesh to the mussels and toss to combine. Place the snapper fillets on a wire rack. Place the wire rack with the fish fillets over the mussels.
  3. Cover and steam for 5 to 7 minutes, or until the fish is just cooked through and the mussels have opened. Discard any mussels that do not open. Add the coconut milk to the mussels and toss well. Season the sauce to taste with salt and pepper.
  4. Place the mussels around the outside of four wide bowls. Place the bok choy and snapper in the middle of the bowls. Pour the sauce over the fish and mussels. Garnish with the cilantro and serve.
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