Fresh Mussels are delicious, easy to cook, and enjoyed by all. Show the kids how to use one of the empty shell as a claw to pick up the meat from the other mussels. It’s fun and a great introduction to seafood.
This recipe is based on a French Classic from Normandy (but some Belgians still make a claim for everything “Moules” 😉
Begin by checking the mussels. The great folks at Killary Fjord shellfish work very hard and always make sure their Mussels are as clean as they get, but they might miss the odd ones… Using a small sharp knife, remove any of the stringy byssus
Remove any broken or open shells but always tap the open mussels before discarding them, if they close they are alive.
Warm the pot on a medium heat, add a tiny amount of oil and slowly fry the pancetta for a few minutes. Add the diced shallots and garlic and gently sweat to soften. Pour in the wine, put the lid on the pot and turn up the heat, you want the liquid to boil and steam.
When the liquid is steaming, lift the lid and add all the mussels, quickly put the lid back on the pot. Carefully shake the pot to agitate the mussels after a few minutes. The mussels should steam open in 3-5 minutes.
Using a colander, strain the cooked mussels over a bowl. Pour the cooking liquor back into the pot and add the cream, cook and reduce for a couple of minutes. Taste and season with black pepper.
Share the mussels between individual bowls and poor over the creamy mussel bouillon. Sprinkle with parsley, serve while hot, with some crusty bread to mop up the delicous jus