This deceptively luxurious soup mixes the flavours of the smoked fish and mussels with a creamy broth
- 450g (1lb) smoked haddock fillet
- 600ml (1pt) milk
- 1 bay leaf
- 40g (1½ oz) butter
- 2 leeks, washed, trimmed and sliced
- 2 celery stalks, chopped
- 2tbsp plain flour
- 450g (1lb) fresh mussels, scrubbed and de-bearded
- Fresh chopped parsley
- 4tbsp single cream
Place the fish in a frying pan and pour over the milk. Add the bay leaf and bring to the boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 15 mins. Remove fish with a slotted spoon and roughly flake, discarding the skin and any small bones. Strain the milk.
Heat the butter in a large deep pan and gently fry the leeks and celery for 8-10 mins until softened. Sprinkle over the flour and cook for 1 min, then gradually stir in the strained milk and 300ml (½ pt) water. Simmer for 15 mins, stirring occasionally.
Meanwhile, place the mussels in a pan with 300ml (½ pt) water, cover and bring to the boil. Cook for 3-4 mins until the shells have opened. Drain, remove mussels from the shells, reserving eight in their shells for the garnish.
Add the fish and mussels to the chowder with the parsley, reserving a few sprigs, and the single cream. Heat gently for 3-4 mins. Season to taste. Serve garnished with the mussels in their shells and reserved parsley.
Remember to discard any mussels that haven't opened after cooking.