Creamy mussel soup with saffron

A deliciously creamy seafood delight with a twist.

Preparation time: 10
Cooking time: 25


  • 1 teaspoon saffron threads
  • 1 large leek (white and tender green), well rinsed
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 12 parsley stems
  • 1kg fresh black mussels, scrubbed and debearded
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 medium celery rib, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
  • 12 black peppercorns
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2-1/2 cups freshly made fish/crab stock
Servings: Change Serving


In a non-reactive soup pot, combine mussels and wine.

Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, cover, and cook until mussels have opened, 5 to 7 minutes.

Remove mussels from shells, reserving 6 large mussels and 6 half-shells for garnish.

Discard any mussels that don't open. Strain cooking liquid through a fine sieve into a large bowl.

In same soup pot, melt butter over medium heat.

Add leek and celery and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes.

Add fish stock, thyme, bay leaf, peppercorns, parsley, saffron, remaining cooked mussels, and reserved mussel liquid.

Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, and simmer 20 minutes. Remove and discard bay leaf.

In a food processor or blender, purée soup in batches until smooth and return to soup pot.

Bring to a boil.

In a small bowl, blend cornstarch with cream and stir into soup.

Add salt and pepper and simmer, stirring constantly, until slightly thickened, 2 to 3 minutes.

Strain soup through a sieve into a large saucepan and simmer over medium heat until heated through, 3 to 5 minutes.

Divide soup among 6 soup plates and garnish each serving with a mussel on the half-shell.


Read more on: fish/seafood  |  slow cook

You might also Like


Chakalaka chicken

2012-02-06 10:57 publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Find a recipe


Talking About


Exciting new restaurant, Homage 1862, opens in Cape Town

Ceili McGeever visits Homage on Loop Street, the restaurant celebrating local cuisine with fire.


Find a restaurant

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.