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For February we have gorgeous shellfish for you! Mussels (Mytilus edulis) are super affordable and versatile and cockles (Cerastoderma edule) give us the romantic dimension with their beautiful heart-shaped form for Valentine's! Both bivalves are packed with nutrients and vitamins and offer great health benefits!
The recipe that Niall Sabongi and his Masterchef Muireann Mc Colgan recreated is kept very simple and close to the original recipe from 1777 by Hannah Glasse.
Both shellfish are extremely versatile and easy to cook so your creativity has no limits if you don't want to cook our historical recipe.

You find local fishmongers and seafood shops in and around Dublin on our google map of fishmongers here. We update this map whenever we can, but it is by no means exhaustive and if you can't find your local or favourite seafood shop here or you're a fishmonger who would like to be added, please get in touch and we will update our map. If you buy your seafood for the recipe of the month at Sustainable Seafood Ireland they will give you a 10% discount. Simply email us to get your discount code.

After you tried our delicious pickled cockles and mussels, please don't forget to complete our quick Questionnaire. Even if you haven't actually made the dish, you cooked something else or nothing at all it is invaluable for us to get your input to progress our research. Thank you very much! Enjoy your seafood experience!

Pickled Cockles and Mussels

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Click for mussel and cockle sustainability info

Click on the mussel or cockle to find out about their history and ecology.

Pickled Cockles & Mussels w/ horseradish butter

by Niall Sabongi & Muireann Mc Colgan

prep: 15-20mins; cook: 7mins; cooling time: 30mins; difficulty level: easy; starter serves 2


  • 2 kg of cockles & mussels in the shell (or 1 kg each)
  • 200 ml white wine
  • 100 ml white wine vinegar
  • 100 g sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper corns
  • 2 shallots - finely sliced
  • 1 medium carrot - peeled & finely sliced


  • Heat a saucepan with a tight fitting lid
  • When hot, add the cockles & mussels, white wine and close the lid
  • Shake the pot a couple of times
  • When the shells open after approx. 2mins strain off the shellfish reserving the cooking liquid.
  • Measure 100 ml of the cooking liquid. Add the vinegar and sugar and bring it to the boil with the peppercorns
  • Cool all to room temperature
  • Remove the cockles and mussels from their shells and add to the cooked pickle along with the shallots and carrots
  • Seal in a jar and keep for up to 2 weeks.

Ingredients for horseradish butter

  • 750 ml cream
  • 200 g butter at room temperature
  • 3 tablespoons horseradish cream
  • freshly milled black pepper
  • sea salt
  • zest of 3 unwaxed lemons


  • Beat the butter, cream and horseradish cream in a bowl with a whisk
  • When the mix is white and fluffy add the zest of the 3 lemons
  • Season with sea salt and freshly milled black pepper

To Serve

Place the horseradish butter into a ramekin and serve at room temperature with a (small) jar of the pickled cockles and mussles and some freshly baked soda bread.


Don't forget to complete our Questionnaire (5-10 mins)

Take part in our monthly social media competition for best pic/post and win a €20 voucher for Sustainable Seafood Ireland. Simply upload your pic/post to twitter or instagram and tag us @foodsmartdublin.

Recent Recipes

Below you will find all the recipes we have cooked so far. You can cook them anytime until they are out of season. Take a look at our seasonality chart to find out what is in season when. You also have the chance to complete the recipe specific questionnaire if you've missed out. Your feedback on the recipes is key to our research into sustainable seafood consumption. Thank you for taking part!

Pickled Cockles & Mussels

Prawn stew starter

Pan-fried Hake main

Smoked Mackerel & Potato Salad

September recipe - Oyster soup in bread cups

August recipe - Mackerel with Rhubard and Gooseberry Relish

June recipe - Pan roasted megrim sole.

May recipe - Potted crab.

Official launch recipes October 2019. Cod Head Terrine and Carrageen Tea