Sunday, January 28, 2007

A mussel-y Rick Stein

James Martin’s Saturday Kitchen yesterday featured Oliver Rowe whipping up a rather tasty looking Chervil-stuffed roast chicken salad with shaved turnips, lardons and cider vinaigrette but I’m afraid I fast forwarded through Rachel Allen doing her Thai peanut, vegetable and coconut noodles as it’s not to my taste. James Martin produced the classic Moules marinière with crusty bread for Tony Hadley and the other guests and a Chorizo and Sea Bass dish which was unfortunately spoilt by excessive olives and tomatoes.
But that particularly caught my eye was a fabulous Rick Stein version of a Jane Grigson recipe Mussels en Croustade. It may have been rather retro-seventies bistro but it looked utterly delicious and I intend to try it next time I cook mussels.

Mussels en croustade with leeks and white wine

by Rick Stein from Seafood Lovers' Guide - Serves 4
Preparation time less than 30 mins - Cooking time 10 to 30 mins

4 large, round crusty bread rolls
175g/6oz butter
900g/2lb mussels, cleaned
50ml/2fl oz dry white wine
2 large or 4 small leeks, cleaned and finely chopped
2 tbsp/1fl oz/30ml double cream

1 tsp beurre manie
1 tbsp chopped chives
salt and freshly ground pepper

1. Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6.

2. Cut a thin slice off the top of each bread roll and set aside. Scoop out all the soft bread from inside each roll with a teaspoon, leaving a wall about 5mm/¼in thick. Melt 50g/2oz of the butter and use to brush the inside of each roll and the lids. Place them on a baking sheet and bake for 5-7 minutes, until crisp and golden. Keep warm.

3. Put the mussels into a large pan with the wine, then cover and cook over a high heat for about 3 minutes, shaking the pan now and then, until they have just opened. Tip them into a colander set over a bowl to collect all the cooking liquor. Remove the mussels from their shells, cover and set aside.

4. Melt another 25g/1oz of the butter in a pan. Add the leeks, cover and cook for 4-5 minutes, until soft. Add all the mussel cooking liquor except the last tablespoon or two (which might contain some grit), then bring to the boil and simmer until reduced by half. Stir in the remaining butter, the double cream and the beurre manie. Simmer for 1 minute until slightly thickened.

5. Stir the mussels, chives and some seasoning into the sauce. Spoon the mixture into the warm rolls, partly cover with the lids and serve.

Today they were reshowing Rick beginning his French Odyssey again on UKFood. Every time I see it I am reminded how much I would just love the opportunity to travel around France on a proper old barge like Rosa. It just looks such an amazing way to travel through the French countryside, really experience it and enjoy all the delicious food on offer on the way. D, MC and I have always said this is exactly what we'd do if we came into an impressive amount of money, as unfortunately this kind of trip doesn't come cheap. But we can dream, n'est-ce pas?


Anonymous said...

Thanks For blog with valuable informations.

Anonymous said...

I just saw this on UK Food... Googled the recipe... et voila! Many thanks for this - looking forward to cooking this delicious recipe!