French Mussel Bisque
Number of Servings: 6
5 lbs (2.5 kg) fresh PEI Mussels
1 bottle (740 mL) white wine
6 Tbsp (90 mL) butter
2 onions (1 ½ cups/ 360 mL), finely chopped
1 leek, pale green and white part only, rinsed and finely sliced
2 carrots, finely chopped
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
½ tsp (2 mL) saffron
Sea salt and pepper
1 x 14 oz (398 mL) can plum tomatoes, drained, tomatoes chopped
1 cup (250 mL) coffee cream (10%)
2 Tbsp (30 mL) fresh dill, chopped
- Rinse fresh PEI mussels under tap water. Tap any mussels that are still open and discard any that do not close after being tapped and rinsed. Set aside.
- Combine 1 cup (250 mL) of the wine and 1 ½ cups water together in a large pot over medium heat. Bring to a boil, add the mussels, cover and leave to cook until steam pours out from under the lid approx 6-7 minutes. Let rest for one minute and then remove the lid.
- When cool enough to handle, scoop out mussels with a slotted spoon and remove mussels from shells. Discard empty shells and any mussels that do not open. Strain remaining cooking liquid and set aside.
- Heat butter in a large pan over medium heat. Add onions, leek, carrot, garlic, saffron, 2 tsp sea salt, several grinds of freshly cracked pepper, and stir, occasionally, for 5 minutes. Add tomatoes, reduce the heat, cover and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add 2 cups (500 mL) of reserved cooking liquid; discard the rest. Add the remaining wine, bring to a boil, lower the heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Add cream and reserved mussels. Stir and continue to cook, gently, but don’t bring to a boil. Add fresh dill and more sea salt (1 tsp) and pepper to taste. Divide between bowls and serve.