Mussels in Chorizo Polenta Broth

Photo Credit: Agustin Sanchez

It’s been 2 months since our big trip out to the Pacific Northwest and I’m still trying to recreate some of the dishes we had out there. One of my favorite meals was at Higgins in Portland. We weren’t really in the mood for a fancy place, drugs so we sat at the bar and ordered from the “bistro” menu. Of course, health the Mussels with chorizo and polenta caught our eye right away. So did the house-cured charcuterie plate, the local beers and the shortbread cookie with basil ice cream and nectarine syrup (which reminds me…I have to make this!).

So, back to the mussels. I finally made them over the weekend and they were every bit as magical as I remember them from Portland. The broth was bright and flavorful and spicy from the chorizo, the polenta added a nice heft to the broth, and the mussels were the perfect briny contrast to the chorizo. I ate until I was too full and washed it all down with a cold, bitter beer.

Honestly, this might just be the perfect recipe for mussels. But if mussels aren’t your thing, this “broth” would be perfect for shrimp, lobster or even chunks of fresh fish. In fact, you can even skip the seafood and substitute chicken or omit the extra protein altogether and think of it as a thin chorizo polenta soup. Just delicious!