Potage of mussels and salt cod with Whitby crab croutes

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This thick seafood soup recipe has refreshing notes of fennel and star anise and is garnished with a little crab and parsley sourdough croute. Mussels pair beautifully with the salt cod fillets in this extraordinary seafood dish from award-winning chef Frances Atkins.

First published in 2015




Potage of mussels and salt cod

Crab croutes


To make the sourdough croutes, heat the olive oil in a large pan, add the sliced bread and fry on a medium-high heat for 2 minutes on each side until the bread is golden and crunchy
  • 4 slices of sourdough bread
  • 3 tbsp of olive oil
Now clean the mussels, scrubbing with a brush and scraping off any stubborn pieces of debris that may be stuck to the shells. Check for any remaining beards and remove by firmly grasping the fibres and pulling out. Give the mussels a final rinse and heat a stainless steel pan with a lid over a medium heat
Place the mussels in the hot pan and pour in the wine. Place the lid firmly on top of the pan and cook for 10 minutes, until the mussels have opened
  • 190ml of white wine
When cool enough to handle, remove the mussels from their shells, ensuring any damaged or closed ones are discarded
Chop the shallots, fennel and thyme leaves
Pass the cooking liquid through a sieve into a clean pan and place over a medium-high heat. Add the shallots, fennel, thyme and star anise to the pan
Reduce the liquid slightly, add the cream and reduce again
  • 300ml of whipping cream
Add the shelled mussels to the sauce. Chop the salt cod into chunks and add to the pan, along with the roughly chopped sun-dried tomatoes
Pour the potage into serving bowls and divide the crab between the sourdough croutes. Garnish with parsley, lay one croute on top of each bowl and serve

The unique beauty of the rolling Yorkshire Dales has long framed Frances Atkins’ creative cooking, offering a stunning backdrop to her creative, spirited and beautifully executed food.

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