Mussels are found in great abundance in the wild around the British Isles and Northern Europe, now extensively grown on ropes in many areas. Wild spat are collected and placed on to ropes suspended between buoys. This creates a really clean mussel, although connoisseurs would argue the wild mussel has more flavour. They attach to the ropes and rocks etc by means of a byssus thread or beard that has to be removed before consumption.
Scientific Name: Perna canaliculus, Mytius edulis
Market Name: Blue mussels, bay mussels
Mussels have two symmetrical concave blue black shells, which will often be covered in barnacles if sourced from the wild. The meat is beige or orange in colour. Mussels make a fine starter, lunch or main course and you can’t imagine a Paella without them.