Wednesday, 31 March 2010

Moules Marinières & Muscadet

A rule of thumb I have when looking at a fishmonger's slab is, if the fish look a bit sad and dull and not very fresh, I go for the mussels; at least you know that they're alive and therefore fresh (unless they're dead of course).  In the picture above I am reacting to the fish man's question on how many kilos I want; I never know what to say but am showing him the rough quantity I want using my hands.  I think this equated to 2 kg, so good for 2 people (and at only £6, a cheap treat).
Mussels are widely grown all around the Kingdom's coasts and yet I don't think we eat enough of them.  Perhaps if they weren't such good value we might not take them for granted and could treat them with a little more reverence.  These came from Brancaster in Norfolk.
A drop of cream is always good to add to moules marinières if you have any but it is optional.  On the recent Master Chef competition on television the judge John Torode marked down the contestants who had added cream and said "it's just wrong!"  Well, his French pronunciation is not only "just wrong", it's downright painful to hear.  But, we'll let him off if he allows us to occasionally add cream to "moolz".


  1. Which one? The one at the fish van and the one without the wine, both my sister with her Canon 1000D and the one with the wine, me and my Olympus C-500 (hopefully to be upgraded soon). There was a video (taken on a FlipCam) which I had to remove because there was a spelling mistake in the title. I will be adding it back later on

  2. Wonder whether JT (Torode, not Terry) would have approved the Muscadet? Goes perfectly IMO - as does Picpoul. You must teach me how to use my Flip

  3. Fiona, I suspect JT might prefer Wonga Longa Oz Chardy or similar. Have you tried raw live mussels? I think Muscadet really comes into its own then. Agree though that it's very good with Marinières too. I must investigate more Picpoul. They serve it by the glass in my local but I'm always distracted by the beers on tap. Would try if they served oysters and mussels but I think it would be defeated by chorizo and olives. Not an expert with Flip (I'm not the one holding it and pressing the buttons obviously) but it's fairly easy (and a lot easier than the Kodak equivalent)

  4. Enjoyed that as much as the Guinea fowl.

    I wonder if Manzanilla would do the moolz justice but also standing up to olive and chorizo. Will give it a go next week.