In his new cooking series, shared exclusively with Food & Wine, French chef and L.A. restaurateur Ludo Lefebvre demos one of his favorite easy recipes. For the full Moules à la Crème recipe, click here.
[MUSIC] [FOREIGN] I'm going to show you how to make mussel mariniere with creme fraiche. My grandma was from Belgium. And I think that's for what I know how to do good fried and good mussel. I'm going to slice the shallot very fine, okay? So i'll put more shallots than garlic. Why? Because I love shallots. [UNKNOWN] so upon [UNKNOWN], some people are very specific during slicing of a garlic specially if Italian. See them [SOUND]. Everything is so perfect. Why fennel? Make me think about soup of France and I know it's a recipe from the north of France, more west. My grandpa had a little condo in [UNKNOWN], so every summer I was going to the south of France. My grandpa always take me for lunch, he always order Moules Mariniere. So grandpa's over there on the beach eating mussel. Takes them fried into the broth like this and eat it. My god, life was good. When I was a kid, no Rose, but after become more older, 16 years old, yep, Rose, yeah. Slice like this fennel bulb. Slice it over side. Always party with my grandpa like bring my friend in his house and we go in the cave in the wine cellar and we drink until you are drunk. Smell the bay leaf. Smell it. See. [BLANK_AUDIO] I wish I almost smell like this. Cut the leaf a little bit like this. Can you smell the difference? Yes. When sometimes we do a big party on Saturday night in my house and my parents are not here, so my friends are here and grandpa's coming and doing some tequila shots with us. Yeah. [UNKNOWN] everybody loves Gilbert, trust me. He was a party guy. Okay, now it's time to take our muscle When you buy the mussel, make sure to keep them in the fridge. The mussel is fresh, closed, fresh. That no good. My grandpa, we always meet around 11:30. Go to this little bar with his friend, so we all go over there and we're drinking Chablis. Chablis, white wine, Chablis, eating. We don't check your ID in France. They don't. A touch of butter. A touch. Why unsalted butter? Because the mussels can be a little salty. Up. Smell the butter, love the smell of the butter. Shallots. We don't want any coloration and then we put the garlic. All of fennel, put a little of fresh thyme, just like this. Bay leaves. I'm going to deglaze everything with some white wine. [SOUND] La. We'll come back some time around 2 o'clock, and of course a little drunk, my grandma was screaming, like all the time. One more. But you know what, that was part of my grandpa. We get to bring to boil, So white wine for one or two minutes. Evaporate all the alcohol from the wine. Some [UNKNOWN] put over there. Make sure your mussels are covered with liquid. I cover, voila. Sometimes, [SOUND], voila. When you work in the fancy, French restaurant, you cook the mussel one by one. Boiling water Put your mustard to the cigun. When you open puff take it out ice water. Yeah you came back to be traumatized, I am traumatized. Could have been abused. Now it's time to lower the heat and add my Creme Fraiche. Look at this, it is beautiful. Bring to boil again. I'll put a little bit of chili flake. Just to give little bit of spiciness. Little bit of white sarawak pepper, yeah. I'm gonna boil everything one more time and we're good. Then you have a good base of mussel mariniere [UNKNOWN] fresh. You see, I smell that. Can you smell that? Pour them straight into a big pot like this. So if some are not open, then you just recook them a little bit, if they're not open, with a touch of wine. Mm, yep. Memory filech My grandpa is back. Grandpa, he was eating the first one like this. [INAUDIBLE] Beautiful. Right here. Then after, he was using that as a fork. With his little shell, and take it like this, and [SOUND]. And you take the juice like this, [INAUDIBLE] broth, so. [SOUND] It's all about the broth. Don't do salad. Just french fries or belgium fries. Whose don't like french fries? No salad, no ****! No. Fried! Fries. French fried. Fries. French fries. [GIGGLES] You know? [MUSIC] [SOUND]