2 quarts water
1/2 onion, quartered
1/2 carrot, quartered
5 whole peppercorns
2 bay leaves
3 thyme sprigs
3 parsley sprigs
1 live lobster, about 1 1/2 pounds
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 cups white wine, such as Sauvignon Blanc or a Rhone-style blend
2 pounds mussels
1 quart heavy cream
1 teaspoon saffron threads
Remove the zest of 1/2 orange in large pieces, bring 1 cup water and 1 cup sugar to a boil in a saucepan, add the zest, reduce heat and cook until it has absorbed most of the syrup and become nearly translucent. Remove zest and set aside on a rack to dry, then roll in granulated sugar. Store in an airtight container in a dry location.
Combine the water, onion, carrot, peppercorns, bay leaves, thyme and parsley in a large pot, bring to a boil over high heat. When the water is boiling, add the lobster, cover, reduce heat to medium-high and cook for 20 minutes. Remove the lobster meat and reserve for another use.
Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat, when hot, add lobster shells, reduce heat to medium, and saute for about 15 minutes. Add the shells to the stockpot and simmer, uncovered, over low heat until reduced to 2 1/2 to 3 cups of liquid (1.5-2 hours).
Add wine to the stockpot and bring to a boil over high heat, add mussels, cover and cook until they open, remove the mussels, reserve stock. Remove mussels from their shells , put in a bowl, moisten with some stock, cover with plastic wrap and set aside.
Reduce the stock by about half over medium-high heat, add the cream and saffron and continue to reduce, over medium heat, by about half again. You should have about 6 cups of thick, creamy soup, strain it through a fine mesh sieve into a clean pot.
Chop the candied orange peel and add with mussels to the soup, heat to just below a boil and serve immediately. Serves 6 to 8.