A Classic Seafood Rigatoni Recipe from Café Brun in Antibes
We catch up with Ben James, owner of Café Brun in Antibes and hear why he loves this classic seafood rigatoni dish served at the restaurant.
Owners Ben and Bea, former Hospitality Managers at rosé brand Maison Mirabeau, met and fell in love while spending a fun…and rosé-filled summer in Cannes. They then spent the next decade working in restaurants, bars, pubs and hotels in the UK, plotting how they could one day own a restaurant of their own in their beloved France. Ben trained at the Cordon Bleu in London and is very excited to bring his classic French cooking skills to their new restaurant, Café Brun in Antibes.
Ben said of this dish, “This dish reminds me of holidays near Sicily, sat drinking a crisp white wine watching the world go by. At Café Brun we are bringing a little taste of Italy with this dish. Rigatoni are great at holding sauces both inside and out and are perfect for capturing all the sauce’s flavour. This simple dish uses flavours that are very evocative of French cuisine: tomatoes, parsley and garlic.”
Seafood Rigatoni with Prawns and Mussels
- 14 oz Rigatoni Pasta
- 7 oz Raw Prawns peeled
- 12 oz Mussels live shells on
- a handful of Fresh Parsley roughly chopped, to serve
- 1 Onion diced
- 3 Garlic Cloves thinly sliced
- 3 1/2 oz Cherry Tomatoes halved
- 3/4 cup Olive Oil
- 1 1/4 cups White Wine
- 2 cups Crème Fraiche
- handful Parmesan grated
- 1 Lemon cut into wedges, to serve
- Salt and Pepper to season
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook the pasta according to pack instructions. We suggest leaving them al dente and pouring cold water over them once done to stop the cooking process.
- Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Cook the prawns for one minute on each side until pink. Remove and set aside. Add the onion and cook for 30 secs-1 min, then add the garlic and cook until golden. Stir in the tomatoes. Add half the parsley.
- Pour in the wine, then leave to bubble until reduced by half. Add the mussels, and cover to steam for a few minutes until all the mussels are open.
- Add the cream to the pan and cook for 1-2 minutes to soften. Add the seafood mix and cook for 1-2 minutes or until thoroughly heated.
- Drain the cooked pasta, reserving about a cupful of the cooking water. Return the pasta to the empty pan and tip in the seafood and tomato mixture. Add a little of the pasta cooking water to loosen, then toss together until everything is well mixed, adding more water as needed.
- Divide between serving dishes and sprinkle over the rest of the chopped parsley and the parmesan. Serve with a lemon wedge to squeeze over.
Drink Pairing Suggestion: This dish goes well with a glass of white wine, and Ben suggests Café Brun guests pair this dish with a glass of white Côte de Provence Lampe de Meduse Cru Classe. This wine has notes of white flowers (acacia), lemon aromas and rosemary flowers.
Café Brun is open seven days a week, all year round, at 8 Rue Aubernon, 06600 Antibes. Follow them on social media @cafebrunantibes or visit their website. Book your table directly with the owner, Bea, via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The French Riviera extends from Cassis to the Italian border and includes famous cities such as Saint Tropez, Cannes, Nice, Monaco and finally, Menton. Since 1860, Côte d’Azur is the French name for this stretch of the azure coastline. Road trips require planning, starting with time constraints and the amount of time you want to drive. We cover only the highlights below, but there is more to discover in each of these cities and towns, meriting a more extended stay. Or, perhaps, a return trip to this sun-baked land of turquoise waters and endless opportunities for exploration.
Antibes is a Mediterranean resort town located in the Alpes-Maritimes department of southeastern France. The city is nestled on the coastline of the Cote d’Azur, snuggled between ritzy Cannes and Nice. Easily walkable, the old part of Antibes is a treasure trove of pedestrian-friendly streets and plazas filled with restaurant tables shaded by oversized umbrellas. There are winding alleyways with Azaleas flaunting their dazzling flowers against stone walls. Down these lanes are surprises around every corner like the carved of an almost hidden chapel.