This has to be one of my favourite dishes to whip up on a hot day. Anything with seafood reminds me of trips to the Balearic's as a child and trying fresh fish for the first time. I'm going to keep this post short and sweet as it's not a dish to mess around with.
I use one of two ways to rustle this dish up, pretty much depending on how much patience I have to cook, and also what we have in the kitchen. The most authentic way is to cook this obviously from scratch and I'll share my go-to recipe below, but the alternative is buy one of the packets of modules marinière that you pretty much empty into a sauce pan and heat up, or ping in the microwave for a few minutes, and then ladle of the top of a bowl of pasta.
Going through life, one thing I have become content with, is that it doesn't make you a bad person if you occasionally don't cook from scratch, we all have those days (or weeks)! Let's face it, if you do you weekly shop at any of the big name supermarkets, there's a a lot of deception and head's buried in the sand attitude to where our food comes from, especially when you're selecting that fine piece of salmon from the 'fresh fish' counter. Providing ready prepped meals have't been ladened with salt, sugar and god knows what, certain dishes can be better for us, especially frozen seafood as it locks in all of the goodness and has a much longer shelf life.
Mussel Linguine with Garlic, White Wine Sauce & Parmesan
- 800g mussels
- 1 garlic, finely chopped
- 1 shallot, finely chopped
- 10g butter
- A bunch fresh parsley and extra for garnishing
- 2 sprigs fresh thyme
- 2 bay leaves
- 50ml dry white wine
- 70ml double cream
- 1/2 lemon
- Salt and pepper to season
- 180g linguine or gluten free pasta
- Shaved parmesan - I'm using Smeg’s Montecoppe Parmigiano Reggiani cheese which is available to buy at the brands London Flagship.
- Crusty bread to serve
Wash the mussels under a cold running tap and discard any shells that won't open when lightly squeezed. Pull out the beards, the tough fibrous bits which you'll find slightly protruding between the closed shells, before knocking off any barnacles with a large knife. Rinse again to rid of any tiny pieces of shell. If you're buying from your fish monger, they're usually more than happy to do this for you!
You'll need two pans, one for the pasta and the other for the moules. Fill one with water and a pinch of salt and bring to the boil. Add pasta and cook per instructions.
In the other, soften the garlic and shallots in the butter. Add the parsley, bay leaf and thyme, before adding the mussels and wine. Turn up the heat to medium-high and cover the pan to steam the mussels open, cooking in their own juices. Cook for 3-4 minutes, shaking every now any then.
Remove the thyme, bay and bunch of parsley and add the cream, chopped parsley, salt and pepper and take off the heat. Squeeze the juice of half a lemon and sit to one side whilst you drain the cooked pasta.
Add the cooked pasta into the pan with the mussels and fold through.
To serve sprinkle with fresh parsley, shaved parmesan and spoon into bowls. Serve with crusty bread and salted butter.