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Green Lipped Mussels, Smokey Consummé, Fennel
By Grant Soeberg, Head Chef of Black Estate
Smokey fish stock:
2 small/medium Smokey fish frames with head (we hang our salted (apply flaky salt moments before smoking) butterfish frames over a charcoal BBQ where we cook lamb for an entire lunch service 4-5hours).
1 pinch dried wakame
1 bulb fennel (stems and all)
1 tsp peppercorns
1 tbsp fennel seeds
1. Roughly chop up all the vege with skin on (I like the depth of colour the onion skin adds)
2. Add everything to a good stock pot and only just cover with water. Bring to a boil and lightly simmer for 1hr.
3. Let this sit for an hour or two and then strain. Chill.
1. Preheat a pan big enough for your mussels to fit in without stacking too many on top of each other.
2. Add mussels and a good splash of dry white wine, cover with a lid and cook for 2 minutes. Remove the lid and remove each mussel individually once they’ve opened. Once cool enough to handle, gently remove flesh from the shell. Reserve mussels in the fridge for later. Chill down the cooking juices.
I would recommend doing a bit of research on how to make a consommé, there are a million different things that can go wrong and far too intricate to explain in one recipe.
Don’t add any salt as the mussel cooking juice has loads of ocean salinity that should result in correct seasoning.
The measurements can be adjusted up or down depending on how much you’re making (simply multiply or divide each ingredient by the same factor)
1l Smokey fish stock
500ml mussel cooking juice
150g egg whites
1. ensure all components are fridge cold, add egg whites to a large pot and give them a good bash with a whisk. (All you’re trying to do is to break down the egg whites, not add volume)
2. Add stock plus juice and give that another good bash with the whisk.
3. On the lowest possible setting, bring your consommé to a simmer on the stove. You can stir very gently while the whites are starting to form but once they set, you don’t want to touch it at all.
4. Simmer very gently until the egg white “raft” is fully set and the stock beneath is clear. (15-20 minutes)
5. Without agitating the raft, ladle the clear stock through a chux cloth, cheese cloth or fat filter, leaving the raft behind.
6. Check seasoning, you can let it down with a bit of water if it’s too salty, but this will obviously dilute any other flavours.
1 smaller bulb of fennel with top attached
good punchy young olive oil
1. Bring some consommé to a simmer and add your mussels which have been cut into bite size pieces. Bring up to heat again but do not boil. You’ve perfectly cooked your mussels and they are tender, it can all be ruined if you boil them when reheating.
2. Put mussels and broth into preheated bowls
3. Shave across the fennel as thinly as your equipment will allow, a mandoline is best here.
4. Place some shaved fennel on top of the dish, drizzle olive oil over top and finish with the fine fronds on the top of the fennel.
5. Like most mussel dishes, this dish is best enjoyed with lightly toasted bread.
Another recipe included as part of our Mighty Mussel Gathering, a collection of mussel recipes shared from within our Eat New Zealand community. Supported by Aquaculture New Zealand, the aim is to encourage more New Zealanders to celebrate and cook with mussels as an affordable and nutritious meal idea for their whānau.
If you are a chef, food writer, keen home cook or general mussel enthusiast - get in touch and send your mussel recipes to email@example.com and we will continue to share the prized family mussel secrets.
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