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How to prepare cockles

How to prepare cockles

Cockles are small Atlantic shellfish which can be used in many delicious dishes. However, they need to be prepared with care before cooking.

Here is a simple way to do this.

292,956 14.3/5

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Last modified on: March 13th 2013

For 120 g, you will need:

Change for: 40 g 60 g 120 g 240 g 360 g

How long does it take?

PreparationRestingCookingStart to finish
25 min.1 hour27 min.1 hour 52 min.
Preservation: A few hours in the fridge in a sealed container or covered with plastic film
At what time?
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Step by step recipe

Stage 1
30 min.
How to prepare cockles : Photo of step #1 Tip the cockles into a large container of cold water. Stir them round briefly and leave for 30 minutes.
Stage 2
3 min.
After this time, remove the cockles form the water. It is important not to tip the contents of the container through a sieve (which will not extract the sand), but remove them carefully from the water.

See how on this video.

Discard the water, rinse out the container, refill it with clean water and put the cockles back in.
Stage 3
30 min.
How to prepare cockles : Photo of step #3 Leave to soak for another 30 minutes.

Repeat this operation until the water remains clear.
Stage 4
5 min.
How to prepare cockles : Photo of step #4 Chop 1 shallot.

Rinse the parsley, keeping the stalk.
Stage 5
2 min.
How to prepare cockles : Photo of step #5 Melt 10 g butter in a large pan then add the chopped shallot and parsley, but do not add salt or pepper. Cook without colouring for 1 minute.
Stage 6
5 min.
How to prepare cockles : Photo of step #6 Add 100 ml dry white wine and bring to the boil.
Stage 7
2 min.
How to prepare cockles : Photo of step #7 As soon as the white wine boils, add the washed cockles...
Stage 8
How to prepare cockles : Photo of step #8 ...and cover.
Stage 9
How to prepare cockles : Photo of step #9 After a few minutes, the shells will begin to open. Stir them round in the pan so that those that are still closed are in the wine to give them the chance to open.
Stage 10
5 min.
How to prepare cockles : Photo of step #10 After 3 or 4 minutes take out all the opened cockles, using a (spider) araignée or skimmer and put them in a sieve.
Stage 11
10 min.
How to prepare cockles : Photo of step #11 Remove the contents of the cockles one at a time and discard the shells. Discard any cockles that have broken shells and any that have not opened.
Stage 12
2 min.
How to prepare cockles : Photo of step #12 Rinse the cockles under cold running water to remove any remaining sand.
Stage 13
How to prepare cockles : Photo of step #13 If you plan to use the cooking liquid to make a sauce, which is a very good idea, you will need to reduce it.
Stage 14
3 min.
How to prepare cockles : Photo of step #14 Pour the contents of the pan into a smaller pan through a fine sieve.
Stage 15
How to prepare cockles : Photo of step #15 Beware: the sand from the cockles will collect at the bottom of the pan, so it is important NOT to try and filter right to the last drop, but discard the liquid from the bottom (and the sand with it).
Stage 16
15 min.
How to prepare cockles : Photo of step #16 Reduce the remaining saved cooking liquid by around half over low heat before using in your recipe.

Remarks

When preparing cockles, you will encounter two problems: sand, which is very unpleasant in the mouth (so do follow the advice to deal with this) and the saltiness of the cooking liquid. If you use this to make a sauce, do not add any salt.

Cockles are mostly shells and water: for 1 kg of cockles you will only end up with around 100 g of useful cockle meat (90% waste).

Nutritional information

Whole recipe
CaloriesProteins CarbohydratesFats
65260 gr16 gr38 gr
33 %23 %2 %6 %
Per 100 g
CaloriesProteins CarbohydratesFats
575 gr1 gr3 gr
3 %2 %<1 %1 %
% are calculated relative to a Recommended Dietary Intake or RDI of 2000 k-calories by day for a woman (change to a man).

How much will it cost?

For 120 g : 6.81 €

Note : These prices are only approximate.

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Recipes which use this 4

Tagliatelle with cockles
Tagliatelle with cockles
Fillets of sole Dieppoise
Fillets of sole Dieppoise
Fisherman's Ragout
Fisherman's Ragout
Crusty cockle tart
Crusty cockle tart
Source: Home made.
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More recipes?

This recipe use (among others)
CocklesCockles: You can get more informations, or check-out other recipes which use it, for example: Crusty cockle tart, Tagliatelle with cockles, Fisherman's Ragout, Fillets of sole Dieppoise, ... All
Dry white wineDry white wine: You can get more informations, or check-out other recipes which use it, for example: Jura bread, Fish in white wine, Purple artichokes braised in white wine, Creamy risotto with vegetables , Pea risotto "mantecare", ... All
ButterButter: You can get more informations, or check-out other recipes which use it, for example: Four quarters, Aperitif rolls, Quail egg canapés, Creamy spinach and potato gratin, Old style brioche, ... All
ParsleyParsley: You can get more informations, or check-out other recipes which use it, for example: Chicken breasts in a potato crust, Chicken and mushroom pie, Green Piedmont Salad, Involtini-Style Filet Mignon , Mixed salad with curry mayo, ... All

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