Otherwise known as the cockney critic or Mr Happy Days, Jerry Mullan’s culinary journey has been as diverse as the countries he’s lived and cooked in, whether it was running Charity events at St Paul’s Cathedral or Hog roasts at Hampton Court, he’s always smiling. Currently, Head Chef of an award-winning West London gastropub, his influences and passion are irresistible whether on a plate or being read.
Mothers Day Mussels Serves 2-4
What a beautiful little representation of seafood. Also known as a mollusc, these little beauties have been getting eaten for thousands of years.
Almost every country has a twist, if you go to Asia, it’s more likely to be with lemon and lime, Spanish with a tomato-based sauce, French with white wine and cream, and not forgetting the most complex of them, that’s right, Britain’s old school favourite of mussels in vinegar, and my nans absolute favourite.
These days it’s on 3 out of 5 pub menus, especially in October when they come into season. I use Exmouth mussels whenever I can, in my opinion, these are some of the best mussels in the world. Big, Plump and juicy, wait until you see the most gorgeous vibrant orange colour when cooked. You will not be able to resist.
Top tips – Always be careful with mussels, this amazing little delicacy is still alive when you buy them, and you want to keep it that way until you are ready to cook. Do not put in water but merely a damp piece of kitchen paper just on top of the mussels.
If they have died, the shell will be open. I have a rule in the restaurant, if it’s even slightly open, we discard it straight away, and we definitely won’t risk it for a biscuit guys.
- 500g of Mussels for a starter portion or 1 kg of mussels for a main portion size
- 1/2 cup of double cream
- 1/2 cup of white wine
- 1/2 tbspn of garlic powder
- 1/4 tbspn smoked paprika (optional)
- 1/2 tbspn of oregano
- 1/2 tbspn of marjoram
- 1 tbspn chopped fresh parsley
- 1 Banana Shallot
- 1 Soughdough Loaf
First and foremost
Cleaning the mussels, if they haven’t been already, we need to remove the beard off the mussels, simply pull the beard towards the bottom of the mussel, so you get it all and then pull slightly. The shells are delicate and can crack, so don’t be a bull in a China plate shop.
Most mussels would have been cleaned on the outside, however I would still give them a rinse and a scrape over with a small sharp knife. Please please be careful, and if it is not scraping off then no worries, it won’t come off in the sauce, it’s not there prom night so happy days guys.
Mussels now prepped and ready to go, let’s move on to that delicious sauce. Get your shallot, cut in half longways, and then cut each half long ways, and thinly slice.
Throw in the pan and cook on medium heat until they’ve gone slightly translucent, this should only take a few minutes or so, then add in all of your dried herbs and spices, stir for approximately ten seconds or so. Then add the white wine into the pan, bring to the boil and then just reduce by half, then pour in the cream.
Once your cream has been added to the sauce, add them beautiful muscles. Bring to the boil, reduce to simmer, keeping a lid on, and watch the magic happen. Turning from a dark navy blue pot to this