Project C Project C
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Cockles and mussels and squid with champagne

For 4 servings | Preparation: 40 minutes - Cooking time: 15 minutes 


Additional kitchen equipment


100g cockles 
100g mussels 
3dl champagne 
+/- 200g squid 
150g butter 
salt & pepper 

For the sauce 
3dl cooking liquid of the bivalves 
100gr butter 

1/4 lemon preserved in salt 
1 clove garlic 
1 fennel bulb 
4 celery sticks 
1 red pepper (the sweet variety) 
1/2 bunch flat-leaf parsley 
pinch of piment d’Espelette 
pinch of smoked paprika 

Additional kitchen equipment

vegetable peeler 


Rinse the mussels in water until there is no more sand left. Put the cockles in a pot of salted water with a lid on and leave in the fridge. Refresh the water every hour or so until the shells are free of sand. In the meantime clean the squid. Remove the membrane from the outside of the body. Remove the plastic-like cartilage from inside the body, cut off the top of the tentacles at the ink-sac and remove the hard part in the middle of the tentacles. Rinse the body and the tentacles until they are all clean. Slice the body into rings and leave the tentacles whole. 


Take two saucepans and add 50g butter in both. Melt the butter and put the cockles in one pot and the mussels in the other. Season with pepper, stir and pour 1dl champagne in both pots. Put a lid on them and cook the bivalves over a high heat. Once the cockles and mussels have opened, pour them into a strainer and leave to drain. Take the meat out of the shells and keep both the shells and the cooking liquid until just before serving. 


Now on to the vegetables, starting with the fennel. Cut off the stalks with their fronds and cut the bulb in half from top to bottom. Cut off the hard part at the bottom as well. Slice the fennel into rings. Cut the top and the bottom off the red pepper. Peel the pepper using a vegetable peeler. Remove all the seeds and slice the pepper into rings. 


Trim the celery. Peel the celery sticks with a vegetable peeler. Cut off a small piece and while you tear it off, simultaneously remove the stringy ribs. Cut the celery sticks into equal-sized pieces, not too big. Peel the garlic and cut lengthways in two. Remove the green core and finely slice the two halves. 


Melt a lump of butter in a deep pan. Shallow-fry the fennel, give it a shake and remove the fennel from the pot. Repeat this with both the red pepper and the celery. After shaking the celery though, do not remove it from the pot but add both the shallow-fried fennel and red pepper to the celery. Season this combination with a pinch of piment d’Espelette and a pinch of smoked paprika powder. 


Melt a lump of butter in another pan, shallow-fry the squid and then add both the cockles and the mussels to this pan. Cut the quarter of salted lemon in very fine pieces and add them to the pot containing the bivalves and the squid. Add the thinly sliced garlic to the pan with the vegetables. 


Bring the cooking liquid from the cockles and the mussels to the boil and mix in the butter. Season the sauce with pepper. 


Spoon the bivalves and the squid into deep plates and put the cooked vegetables on top. Add a generous portion of frothy sauce and garnish with some roughly cut flat-leaf parsley.