This recipe for Tillamook Cockles with Fresh Laurel, Baby Fennel, Dijon and White Wine Cream comes from Chef Ryley Eckersley of Quaintrelle Restaurant in Portland, Oregon.
Chef Eckersley recently took over the kitchen at the restaurant, which is located in Portland’s bustling N. Mississippi neighborhood. He serves cuisine inspired by the Pacific Northwest, made with passion and intention, working with purveyors to ensure the best seasonally available local ingredients.
Born in London, Eckersley has been working in restaurants around the globe since the age of thirteen. He often decamped to his family’s vacation home in the south of France where he would commune with chefs at many of the village restaurants, absorbing all he could about working with of-the-moment ingredients in postage-stamp sized kitchens.
“Our menu at Quaintrelle is very bright. It’s full of colors and fresh flavors, with nothing too heavy, which is how I like to eat,” says Eckersley. “Our mission, is to make sure that everything is sustainably sourced whenever possible. Pacific Northwest-grown vegetables will always play a leading role on the menu, but I’m really enjoying bringing more seafood to the table from local waters right now.”
- 16 ounces cockles or any bivalve
- 3 ounces chopped shallots
- 2 cloves chopped garlic
- 3 baby fennels, halved
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 3 fresh bay leaves, use dry if you can't find fresh
- 4 ounces dry white wine
- 8 ounces cream
- To taste lemon
- 1 Heat a pan over high heat a tablespoon of oil.
- 2 Add fennel, shallots, garlic, bay and cockles and cook until sizzling.
- 3 Add mustard, then deglaze with wine.
- 4 Add cream, and cook until cockles have opened and liquid has reduced until it's a rich sauce.
- 5 Serve with a crusty baguette.