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Denise Cowburn-Levy’s Cape West Coast creamy mussel pot


  • 2 kg live mussels, cleaned Naturally we recommend Cape Fish's fresh mussels
  • 6 stalks thyme
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 1 bouquet garnish of parsley, thyme and bay leaves
  • 1 cup dry white wine Make it a good one!
  • 2 cups cream
  • A handful of parsley leaves, coarsely chopped


  • If your mussels have not already been cleaned, you’ll need to do this first (luckily, Cape Fish has a mussel cleaning service for R15 per kg).
  • Put a cup of white wine and 6 sprigs of thyme into a large pot over a high heat and bring to the boil.
  • Add the cleaned mussels, giving the pot a good shake every now and then to allow them to open.
  • If any mussels don’t open, then discard them.
  • Remove the mussels with a slotted spoon, and strain the liquid they were cooked in, as this can contain sand, and keep for the sauce.
  • Soften the garlic and shallots or onions in the butter in the same pan over a medium heat until well done.
  • Add the strained cooking liquid and the bouquet garnish of herbs, and turn up the heat to let the sauce reduce by a third.
  • Remove the bouquet garnish with the herbs, add the cream and reduce again till slightly thickened, taste and adjust the seasoning.
  • Add the mussels back into the pot, removing a few halves of the shells.
  • Add the parsley and remove from the heat.
  • Spoon into large warmed bowls and serve with loads of crusty warm bread for dunking.
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!