Sunday, 30 March 2014

Moules Marinières Classiques

I was in Sainsbury's last week, when I noticed that the mussels were on offer, £1.30 for a 500g bag. I think (hope!) that the mnemonic for the months that mussels are in season is that if the month has an "r" in it, you're generally ok. The local eateries tend to showcase local mussels from the Menai Straits, but I think the nicest mussels I've had are from Loch Fyne - they are large, plump and juicy, with very little grit.

The children were not brave enough to try them this time, and I couldn't be bothered to make my own frites, so I texted my husband to pick up some chips on the way home. The local chippy is closed for a few weeks, so he picked up some rather sad and soggy looking skinny fries from the kebab shop next door. However, 10 minutes in a hot oven crisped them up nicely, and they made an acceptable cheat for the evening.



  • 1kg live mussels
  • 1 glass of dry white wine (I picked up a bottle of Chardonnay)
  • 1 medium onion, finely diced
  • 2 sticks of celery, washed and finely diced
  • 30g butter
  • 1 clove of garlic, finely chopped
  • 75ml double cream
  • A small pinch of ground white pepper
  • A large handful of fresh flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped
Serves 2



  • Rinse the mussels and pull the hairy beard from each one. Discard any with broken shells, or that do not close when tapped on a hard surface, then soak in a couple of changes of water to get rid of any sand and grit
  • Heat the butter gently in a wok (don't let it brown and burn)
  • Add the onions, garlic and celery to the wok, and stir for 3-4 minutes to soften
  • Increase the heat, drain the mussels and add them to the wok, with a pinch of ground white pepper
  • Stir the mixture, then add the white wine and bring to a moderate boil. Cover and cook for 5 minutes, until the shells have opened
  • Uncover, stir in the cream and a large handful of chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • Serve immediately, with crusty bread or thin chips

Moules Marinières Classiques

With takeaway chips!

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