When you get back from the fishmongers put your mussels straight into some cold water. Give them a good scrub and remove any seaweed and barnacles. Discard any that are open, you don’t want to eat them because their already dead.
Wash the mussels in several changes of cold water to get rid of all the dirt and sand. Check for any where one half of the shell rubs against the other and discard them too. They will make the others gritty when you cook the mussels.
Pull off the beard (the hairy part that sticks out from inside the mussel) and give them one final wash,
Cook the shallot on a low heat, without colour for 3/4 minutes.
Add the mussels, bay leaf and give the pot a good stir.
Then you pour in the white wine, turn the heat up full and give the pot a good shake.
Place a lid on the pot and cook the mussels for about 3 minutes or on till they all open.
Drain off the mussels, but keep the cooking liquor. Its full of flavour and you can freeze it and use it in a sauce later.
Next you have to make the garlic butter. Simply combine the garlic, lemon zest /juice, parsley and butter together.
When the mussels are cool enough to handle. Remove and discard the top shell.
Line a baking tray with foil (saves on a bit of washing up later) and place the mussels inside.
Spoon the butter into a disposable piping bag and pipe about a teaspoon of butter into each mussel shell.
Top each mussel with a good sprinkle of breadcrumbs and cook under a moderate grill till golden.
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