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West Coast Mussels with White Wine, Leeks, Lemon and Cream Recipe

West Coast Mussels with White Wine, Leeks, Lemon and Cream Recipe
Nothing beats the distinctive flavour of fresh black mussels, straight from the beautiful West Coast. Spier Executive Chef Lolli Heyns shares her West Coast mussels recipe with us.

Don’t overcook them – they just need a few minutes of hot steam in your pot of wine and leeks. Some lemon rind adds a nice zesty touch. Serve hot with crusty bread to mop up the sauce.

And what wine should you pair with such a dish? With the days still long and the mercury still soaring, it’s little wonder that Lolli’s go-to varietal is Chenin Blanc.

“Chenin is a refreshing varietal that can be made in completely different styles – and it goes really well with summer foods,” she explains.

You also might like: Chenin’s Time to Shine

West Coast mussels with white wine, leeks, lemon and cream recipe

Serves 4-6

Prep and cooking time: 30min


  • 30ml olive oil
  • 30ml butter
  • One small bunch leeks, finely chopped (white parts only)
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • Half a bottle white wine (Chenin Blanc works well)
  • 5 – 2kg cleaned fresh black mussels
  • 125ml fresh cream
  • Rind of a lemon, finely grated
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Chopped fresh herbs, to serve (parsley and dill work well)
  1. Rinse the mussels under cold tap water to clean them. Scrub the outsides if they are a little hairy, then pull off the grassy “beard” from the pointy side to the round side. They are now ready for the pot. Remember, any mussels that weren’t closed before cooking must be discarded. And any mussels that won’t open after cooking, can also be tossed.
  2. In a wide heavy-based pot or casserole, heat the oil and butter over medium heat. Fry the leeks and garlic until soft and translucent, but not too brown. Add the wine, turn up the heat and bring to a boil.
  3. Add the mussels all at once and cover with a lid. Bring to a boil again and steam for five to eight minutes until they are open and just-cooked.
  4. Add the cream and heat through, then take off the heat and add the lemon rind. Season to taste with salt and pepper (some mussels can be very salty already, so be careful).

Serve scattered with chopped herbs and a glass of Chenin Blanc.

In case you’re in the mood for something else mussel-related, try Jamie Oliver’s Mussels 3 Ways.

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