Sambuca, cream and leeks flavour create a broth so flavourful, you may just want to enjoy it on its own. But served with meaty mussels and crusty bread is outstanding.

Gluten free, enjoy with gluten free bread.

For vegetarian, instead of mussels, we suggest cutting firm tofu into cubes and deep-frying until crispy. If pescatarian, it's perfect.

Styling Mari Loewen. Recipe Marisa Curatolo. 

Styling Mari Loewen. Recipe Marisa Curatolo. 

  • Duration
  • Cook Time
  • Prep Time
  • Serves 4Servings


  • 2 pounds fresh mussels, in shell
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

  • 2 tablespoons salted butter

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 leek, thinly sliced, plus additional slices for garnish
  • 1/4 cup white wine

  • 2 tablespoons Sambuca
  • 1/4 cup 35% cream

  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 1 baguette, to serve


Look for the very freshest mussels at your local fish market. Most times mussels have been scrubbed of their threads, but remove if you have to and rinse under cold water; discard any that are open.

Heat olive oil with butter in large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add garlic and leeks and cook for 2 minutes. Add white wine, Sambuca and cream; cook for 7 minutes. Add mussels; cover saucepan and increase heat to high. Cook until mussels have opened, about 5 minutes. Discard all mussels that are closed after cooking. Spoon mussels and broth into serving bowls and season with salt and pepper. Garnish with leeks and serve with baguette.

To store mussels before use, wrap in a damp cloth and place in coldest part of refrigerator.