1-1/2 to 2 kilos mussels
3 rashers bacon, finely chopped
1/2 large onion, finely chopped
1 celery stick, finely sliced
1 small leek (use white part only), finely sliced
1 small bulb fennel, finely sliced
salt & pepper
Peel kumara, chop into medium size pieces and cook in boiling water until tender. Drain (reserve liquid), and cut kumara into small squares.
Saute bacon, onion, celery, leek and fennel in a little olive oil until tender.
Steam the mussels open in a little water. Discard any that do not open.
Strain the mussel liquid and add liquid to the sauted vegetables. Remove the mussels from their shells and pull out the small tongue (optional). Chop mussels into 3 or 4 pieces and add to the chowder. Add the kumara and reserved liquid. Season with salt and pepper.
Options: A little cream, parsley or finely shredded spring onion can be added if desired. This mixture can be blended for a finer texture if required.