Hi there folks, hope all is well. We are now in the height of summer, although you wouldnt really know it. Still, there is the odd glimpse of the sun poking through the clouds so we better make the most of it! Down here in Kent, we seem to be getting big heavy bursts of rain followed by an hour or two of sun so we cant complain too much. Summer recipes are very much on my mind now so im trying to get all my favourite summer cooking done while the sun is about!
When I was younger, my family would pack into the car every summer and drive from Cork all the way to the south of France or even Spain on occasion. It occurred to me a few days ago that its probably why French food always makes me feel sunny and warm, a positive mental association. There are few dishes that can be more “French Summer” than, Moules Frites. It is quintessentially French and probably one of my favourite dishes. Ok so I know the “frites” arent exactly the most healthy but the recipe below is acceptable and as the saying goes, everything in moderation! Bon appetit et bon vivant!
Serves 1 but easily multiplied, 10 pp in total
- 500g Mussels, well cleaned.
- 1 small onion, finely chopped.
- 1 stick celery, finely chopped.
- 1 clove garlic, crushed
- 75ml white wine
- 50ml good stock
- 150g potato, cut into small cubes.
- 1 teaspoon butter
- 1/2 tablespoon oil
- Heat a large deep pan over a medium heat. add the oil to the pan and then add the potato cubes. Cook for 20 mins, turning occasionally so that they brown. After 20 mins, add half the teaspoon of butter to the pan and toss well with sea salt and black pepper. Toss the potatoes onto an oven tray and transfer to a warm oven for 10 mins.
- Using the same pan, add the remaining butter and then add the onion, celery and garlic. Sweat gently for 5 minutes so that they are softened but not brown.
- Add the mussels, wine and stock to the pan along with a little black pepper. Dont add salt at this stage as the mussels will release their own juices which are salty.
- Place a lid on the pan and steam for about 8 – 10 mins, until all the mussels are opened.
- Serve immediately with the frites. Remember to toss away any mussels that dont open when cooked. I sometimes like to eat this with crusty bread for soaking up all the lovely juices.