Thursday, April 18, 2013

242&243/984 - Moules Marinières & Jean's mussels

It's one of those amusing things I do - half read a recipe before a dinner party and then get a surprise that there are more steps than I expected on the night.

It was a couple of hours before my lovely guests were due to arrive that I read the part in the Jean's mussels recipe that said, "Steam mussels instructed in the Moules Marinières recipe". Lucky for me I have a herb garden and so I had all of the herbs and bits required, but I really, really must start reading these recipes in advance!

I was able to cook my vegetables in butter and water (yum) and put them to one side well before the festivities began. I also put the few things required for the steaming step in a bowl together ready to go. For the first time ever I cooked the mussels in a wok, but unfortunately my lid is a bit wonky and ill fitting so I don't think I will be doing that again in a hurry. The mussels cooked, but I found that some took longer than usual to open which is not ideal. I found myself away from the table checking on them for longer than I would have liked, but on the upside I had a glass of champagne in my hand so things could have been much worse. 

Trev's gorgeous grandfather gave me a bucket of amazingly fresh and sweet tasting walnuts, which is one of the reasons I decided to make this dish. The walnuts were fried with garlic (never, ever would I have thought to do that!) and then blitzed and mixed with parsley. The walnuts were absolutely wonderful on top of the creamy mussels and I think I may have added an extra spoonful or two to my bowl once I realised how good they were. 

I will be using the remainder of the yummy walnut mix on steamed fish, sprinkled over salads and maybe even on steamed vegetables. Or maybe I will simply eat it by the spoonful...

Pineapple sage - a gift from
one of my guests

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