I spotted this amazing recipe on Guardian a while back. Since there was an opened bottle of Chablis in my fridge (the recipe requires splashes of white wine) and parchment paper is a theme now (apparently), I decided to go for it.
Leeks and Mussels Tagliatelle. Although technically, it’ll be something slightly altered because… Wait for it.
Here’s the original recipe:
The only difference with what I’m doing is that we don’t really get small cute leeks in Finland. They only come in one size. Large. So I just chop off the bits at both ends, and chop/slice as finely as I can. And yeah, my mussels aren’t fresh. They’re in brine. Oh, and another thing. I wanted to use fresh (store-bought) pasta, and they only had fettucine. But that’s close enough, right? We Finns don’t know anything about pasta anyway. It’s food, okay. (Berlusconi’s pizza comments still sting, after all these years. It’s a national trauma now, we pass it on in our genes. It’s gone epigenetic.)
Check the recipe link for what you need. It’s pretty simple.
- I chop off both ends of my big leek, leaving out the rough, greener bits. I slice it finely and rinse it well.
- I heat the butter and olive oil in a pan and add the sliced leeks. Stir and mix, so that it all becomes glistening.
- Then I add a splash of white wine and place a sheet of parchment paper on top of the pan, placing the lid of the pan on top. The parchment paper supposedly keeps the leek moist. Seems to do the trick.
- I let the leek simmer for about 30 minutes until it’s soft.
- I take my mussels (in brine) and rinse them, then I pop them in a heated pan for a bit with some olive oil. I splash some wine over it, and stir. Then I dump the mussels and the juice into the leek pan.
- I cook some fettucine and mix it in with the leek and mussels. Stir.
- I season black pepper.
- I plate up and grate some pecorino on the pasta.
The fettucine does feel a little too chunky for this dish. Next time I’ll try tagliatelle or linguini…
But I will say this. It’s nice.Tastes like spring. Just a tiny bit seafoody. The Chablis was a good wine to splash around. It really adds the right acidity to the dish. So do make sure your white wine is more on the crisp side, with a nice bit of acidity. No Chardonnay!