Thursday, 29 December 2011

Cockles and Mussels Welsh Style

Serves 4

 A luxurious but economical dish with a lovely Welsh flavour. This is perfect over Christmas as it is a celebration of all the wonderful flavours that we have in this part of the world, and isn’t that what Christmas should be about – luxury and celebration. Swansea market is the best place to get the ingredients as there a 3 excellent fishmongers and wonderful bacon from Abraham’s. We had this on the big day itself but without the cockles and served with frites.


What you need

1kg mussels, cleaned and de – bearded

250g cockles in the shell, cleaned under running cold water to remove grit

100ml Welsh cider

125ml double cream

2 rashers Welsh streaky bacon, diced

½ onion, finely diced

1 clove garlic, crushed

Handful of chopped parsley

Knob of butter

How to do it

1)    With cockles and mussels, ensure that any that are open, and don’t shut with a sharp tap, are discarded as they are dead and unsafe to eat.

2)    In a very large pan with a lid, heat the butter and fry the bacon and onions until the bacon is coloured and the onions soft. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute being careful not to burn it.

3)    Add the cockles and mussels and then the cider. Bring to the boil then simmer with the lid on until the cockles and mussels open, discarding any that don’t. Lift out the cockles and mussels with a slotted spoon and set aside while you add the cream and boil until it is thick. Taste and when you are happy put the cockles and mussels back in for a minute. Add the chopped parsley and serve in large bowls with crusty bread and a glass of white wine.

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