How to Make Moules Marinières - A Simple Mussels in White Wine and Cream Recipe

French cuisine, Oo la la, C’est Magnifique! I have to say I love to cook and I try to recreate all sorts of foods inspired by many cultures and countries, but when it comes to French cuisine I never really bother! You may wonder why…Well It’s probably because I don’t want to make ‘a balls’ of such amazing food.

So one year I was in the South of France, I know I’m so posh right (joke), and I ordered a starters called Moules Marinière (not sure if there’s meant to be an ‘s’ at the end of the last word) and for a start I was shocked at how fast it arrived at my table and secondly at how AMAZING it smelled and tasted. Having first eaten this, I basically ordered it every second day for the whole holiday.

So to cut an irrelevant story short I arrived home inIrelandand began craving my Moules Marinière so one day I decided to recreate it and to my surprise it turned out great and only had a few ingredients! I think the French like to keep their food simple anyway.

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Other names for Moules Marinière:

Note Moules Marinière is roughly translated in English as ‘Mariner's style Mussels’ or ‘Fishermans Style Mussels’ but to be honest the rough translations sound dreadful. Recreated English names for this delicious dish are Marinated Mussels, Mussels in White Wine and Cream Sauce, Mussels in Wine Sauce and so on.

Below is a list of ingredients for a Moules Marinières Recipe and below that are simple steps on how to make Moules Marinière.

Moules Marinières Recipe: Serves 2

  • 2 kilos of Fresh Mussels
  • Knob of Butter (salted or unsalted)
  • 2 Cloves of Fresh Garlic
  • 3 Shallots or 1 Medium White Onion
  • Fresh or Dried herbs (Herbs de Provence, Parsley or anything you choose)
  • White Wine of course! 18.75cl, a quarter bottle
  • A drop of Fresh Cream, Single or Double
  • 1 cup of Hot Water

Method for Moules Marinière:

  1. Scrub all mussels in the sink under cold water, make sure to remove any sand, sea debris, and anything you don’t want attached to the mussels.
  2. Dispose of ALL dead mussels (See below)
  3. Dead Mussels will always be open, but to make sure they are dead give any open or slightly open mussels a little tap against the side of the sink or with the back of a knife. If they are alive they will begin to close straight away.
  4. Chop up your garlic and shallots/onions finely and sautee the lot with butter in a large heavy based saucepan on a low-medium heat. Make sure to cover the pan with a lid and cook shallots/onions until transparent.
  5. Pour in the cup of hot water or less than one cup if you choose, followed by the white wine and herbs. Simmer for a couple of minutes.
  6. Increase heat until liquid boils. Quickly add in the cleaned live mussels and place lid on top.Lower the heat and simmer to a MAX of 5 minutes (Any longer and the mussels will shrink too much).
  7. Stir in your cream just before the cooking time is up.

Serving Moules Marinière

Serve Moules Marinière in a large bowl with an empty bowl beside you on the table to discard of your empty mussel shells. Serve Moules Marinière with fresh bread covered in unsalted butter and make sure to dip the bread in your delicious white wine and cream sauce.

Eating Moules Marinière

I find it hilarious when you see us sophisticated citizens eating our Moules Marinière with a knife and fork, I also find it hilarious when you see us there for a half an hour trying to remove the little morsels from their shells with a fork.

One tip I’ll give you is use an empty mussel shell as a tiny clamp to remove the mussels from their shells. It’s 10 times faster and looks interesting.

Bon Appetite!

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Comments 6 comments

Thelma Alberts profile image

Thelma Alberts 5 years ago from Germany

Wow! Good morning. I love this recipe. I love to eat mussels and so I would like to try your recipe. Thanks for sharing. Great hub. Bookmark!

Kingsthorpedavid profile image

Kingsthorpedavid 5 years ago from Toowoomba Queensland Australia

Bliss! Not had this since I was in France on the West coast 40 years ago. The locals drank Cider with this dish.

Your advisory is perfect.

Unfortunately I use frozen Mussels mainly here in Queensland.

Re knife and fork v shell - we have a local Hotel who serves Mussels in Belgian Mussel Pots, they refuse to serve you a fork and that is written into the menu!

Thanks for this informative Blog.

David - Queensland Australia

Iontach profile image

Iontach 5 years ago Author

Hi Thelma! Thanks so much for your compliment :) I hope you do try it as it's sooooooo simple and looks great when you have guests over!

Iontach profile image

Iontach 5 years ago Author

Hi there Kingsthoredavid! That's an interesting name you have. Can I ask why do you mainly use frozen mussels? I know it's sometimes hard to find live ones here at times.

Thanks for your kind words, means a lot!

Kingsthorpedavid profile image

Kingsthorpedavid 5 years ago from Toowoomba Queensland Australia

Dave it is hard to find fresh Moules in my inland City of Toowoomba Queensland, so frozen New Zealand Mussels are used from supermarkets.

Looking forward to your next Blog - something Irish?

David, Kingsthorpe (small town)with a hard white frost this morning - I am staying in bed till 10am! (Monday)

Iontach profile image

Iontach 5 years ago Author

Aw that's a pity you cant get the fresh ones David, they're just lazy to transport them inland. lol

Well I was thinking of writing another article for a Rhubarb tart recipe. Rhubarb tart is VERY Irish, as well as English of course, so that will be my Irish recipe addition!



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