Peruvian Steamed Mussels (Choros a la Chalaca)


Mussel season has just begun here and with the heat of the last couple of days, a cold dish with minimum amount of cooking was very welcome. This is a super easy recipe and a fairly cheap one as well. It is a very popular Peruvian dish. It is often ordered as an appetizer in Seafood restaurants (cevicherias).  It is usually served by the dozen but mussels in Peru are much bigger than the ones you find here.


2 kilos of mussels

3 medium size red onions, finely chopped

2 large tomatoes (peeled, deseeded and finely chopped)

1 bird’s eye chili, finely chopped

Kernels of one corn, cooked

1 tablespoon of freshly chopped parsley

Juice of 3 limes

1 tablespoon of olive oil




Rinse the mussels well under cold water, pulling off any beards. Discard any mussels that are broken or that don’t clamp shut when tapped.

Steam the mussels and remove from the pot as soon as they open. Discard the ones that haven’t opened. Break the mussels in half and discard the empty shell. Arrange on a plate and place in the fridge to cool.

Cook the corn for 3 minutes in boiling water. Drain and when it is cool enough to handle, cut the kernels off the cob. Reserve in the fridge.

Chop the onion as small as you can. For me, any salsa tastes better if everything is cut very small because it allows the dressing to really cover all the little pieces. Peel, deseed and chop the tomatoes as small as you can.  Chop the chili.  Refrigerate all until the mussels are cooled and you are ready to serve.

To serve, chop some parsley and put it in a bowl. Add the tomatoes, onions, chili and corn. Squeeze in the juice of all the limes. Add the oil, salt and pepper. Taste and then spoon some salsa on top of each mussel. Serve immediately



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One thought on “Peruvian Steamed Mussels (Choros a la Chalaca)

  • July 25, 2014 at 8:14 pm

    este plato es riquisimo.


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