1 kg fresh mussels, scrubbed and de-bearded
150 ml dry white wine
3 tbsp Spanish olive oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
500 g potatoes, peeled and cubed
2 bay leaves
saffron threads, crushed
1 ltr good quality fish stock
salt and freshly ground black pepper
some fresh parsley, chopped, to garnish (optional)
1. Before starting, check that all the mussels are closed, or tap them a few times, to close them. Throw out any that remain open! ! Now, put the mussels and wine in a shallow pot. Cover and put on a high heat until the liquid begins to bubble. Take them out one at a time, as they open, so that they don?t overcook, placing them in a strainer over a bowl, in order to keep the liquid. Discard any that remain closed.
2. Meanwhile, heat the oil gently in a medium pot, stirring in the onion and potato cubes and cook on a gentle heat for about 5 minutes. Now strain the mussel liquid through a very fine strainer and add to the potato and onion. Add the bay leaves and stock and bring the soup to boiling. Now turn down the heat, until the soup is simmering gently, stir in the saffron and cook gently for 15-20 minutes. Now, you can remove some or all of the mussels from their shells, or remove one side from most of the mussels.
When the potatoes are well cooked, discard the bay leaves and whiz the soup in a blender until velvety smooth. Now stir in the mussels, reheat if necessary, and check the seasoning. Garnish with the parsley.