Monday, 21 September 2009

South East Coast Seafood

This week I headed down to the coast for some fresh seafood. Whitstable has it in abundance. Crabs, Winkles, Mussels, Oysters, all fresh from the sea, The choices were almost too much for me. Should I make a late summer Paella, some lovely Crab cakes, Skate in batter? I plumped for some juicy Mussels and made the following, delicious soup.

(To be honest, I also made late summer Paella, Crab cakes and Skate in batter)

Mussel Soup with Saffron


120g butter
2tbsp olive oil
1/2 onion, finely diced
1 carrot , finely diced
1/2 leek, finely diced
1 small bunch Parsley
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1tbsp dried Tarragon
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1ltr Mussels
1 bottle dry white wine
400ml double cream
A good pinch Saffron
1tbsp Chives, finely chopped


Melt the butter with the olive oil in a large frying pan and saute the diced vegetables until soft.

Add the Parsley, Tarragon and garlic, with a little salt and plenty of pepper, and cook for a further 2 minutes, stirring well. Remove from the heat.

Clean the Mussels and remove the beards.

Pour the wine into a large saucepan and throw in the mussels. Cook until they open and leave to cool.

Strain, reserving the liquid and remove the mussels from their shells.

Sieve the liquid and discard the sediment.

Pick out a few plump mussels and set them aside.

Place the remaining mussels in a pan containing the vegetables. Pour in the strained wine and simmer for 20 minutes.

Sieve and press well to extract all the juices.

Return the liquid to a clean pan, add the cream, bring to the boil and add the Saffron.

Simmer for a few minutes, stirring well and skim off any scum which may rise to the surface.

Add the reserved Mussels and sprinkle with the Chives.

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