2,25 kg – 5 lb mussels
1 stick celery
1 tb butter
33 cl – 10 fl. oz. bottle pale ale
1 ts cornflour
3 egg yolks
1,5 dl – 5 fl. oz cream
Scrape and clean the mussels thoroughly, removing the beards and discarding any broken or open ones. Wash them in several waters.
Chop the onions, shallots and celery finely. In a very deep saucepan, melt the butter. Add the mussels and stir. Pour in the beer, add the pepper and very little salt, cover the saucepan and cook the mussels over a medium flame until they have all opened.
Remove the mussels, reserving the liquid. Open the mussels, leaving them on the half shell, and layer them in a wide, semi-shallow serving dish.
Strain the liquid into a smaller saucepan. Mix the cornflour into a paste with a little water and add it to the liquid. Heat this to just under simmering point. Beat the egg yolks and cream and gradually beat in a little hot liquid. Pour the mixture into the saucepan, whisking all the time, until it thickens: it MUST NOT boil.
Check the seasoning, then pour the sauce over the mussels, and serve.
Makes 4 servings.
Source: A Taste of the Belgian Provinces, Enid Gordon and Midge Shirley (published by The Tuesday Group, rue Frans Merjay, 1060 Brussels).