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Cockle Cawl With Wild Anglesey Oak Smoked Sea Bass

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“Wales is country tied to the sea. This cawl celebrates the wonderful seafood of Wales. Based on this recipe:”
1hr 15mins

Ingredients Nutrition

  • 1 large smoked fish fillet, cut into 4 even sized pieces (seabass)
  • 25 g unsalted butter
  • 1 leek, white only chopped finely
  • 2 slices unsmoked bacon, chopped into small pieces
  • 2 medium potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 150 ml dry white wine
  • 350 ml chicken stock
  • 1 kg live cockles or 250 g cockle meat
  • 400 ml milk
  • 1 teaspoon peppercorn
  • 1 tablespoon double cream
  • 1 dessert spoon laverbread (optional)


  1. Melt the butter in a large saucepan.
  2. Add the leek, potatoes and bacon and cook over a low heat until the bacon is cooked and the leek softened but not coloured.
  3. Add 100ml of the wine and all the stock. Cover and simmer for 15-20mins until the potatoes are cooked.
  4. If you prefer a thickened cawl, remove a ladleful and puree. Return to the pan.
  5. Meanwhile poach the seabass in the milk with the peppercorns for 10 mins or until the seabass is cooked. Strain and reserve the poaching liquor.
  6. Keep the seabass warm.
  7. In another saucepan, heat the remaining wine.
  8. Add the live cockles and cover with a tight-?tting lid. Cook for 3- 4mins, shaking the pan occasionally until the cockles have opened. Strain and discard any unopened cockles.
  9. Remove cockle meat from shell, reserving 4 or 5 cockles in their shell for presentation.
  10. Add 250ml of the seabass poaching liquor, the cream and the laverbread to the leek and potato cawl. Stir until combined and heat gently.
  11. Add the cockles and heat until hot. Place the seabass in warmed bowls and spoon over the cawl.

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