Soupe aux Moules

Preparation info

  • Serves


    • Difficulty


    • Ready in

      50 min

Appears in

The French Market

The French Market

By Joanne Harris and Fran Warde

Published 2005

  • About

This thick, rich soup of mussels, saffron, wine and cream works especially well with chilli garlic bread, which is Anouchka’s favourite, or thick slices of pain poilâne. I also like to serve the soup with most of the mussels in their shells; I think that one of the pleasures of eating mussels is the time that it takes, and the voluptuous sensation of eating with your fingers. Try it both ways, and see which you like best.


  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 shallots, chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, crushed, peeled and chopped
  • 50 g flour
  • 500 ml fish stock
  • generous pinch of saffron
  • 100 ml double cream
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 200 ml white wine
  • 2 kg mussels (shelled weight 600 g) bunch of flat-leaf parsley, chopped


    Heat the oil and fry the shallots gently for 4 minutes, then add the garlic and cook for a further minute. Sprinkle in the flour and stir well to absorb all the oil. Slowly add the stock, mixing to make a smooth broth. Add the saffron, cream and seasoning and simmer for 15 minutes. In another large pan heat the wine. Add all the mussels, then cover and cook for 6 minutes until they are all open. Discard any that are not open by this stage.

    Drain the mussels, reserving the liquid. Strain the liquid and add to the soup. Allow the mussels to cool, then remove the meat from the shells and add to the soup. Simmer for 2 minutes. Add the parsley and serve.