Clam

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About

Clam is a word which can be used for all or only a few species of bivalve mollusks; the word is a common name which has no real taxonomic significance in biology. It is however quite widely used as part of the common names of bivalves, and also has significance in fisheries and cuisine. A clam's shell consists of two (usually equal) valves, which are connected by a hinge joint and a ligament which can be external or internal. In most clams, two adductor muscles contract to close the shells. The clam has no head, and usually has no eyes, (scallops are a notable exception), but a clam does have kidneys, a heart, a mouth, and an anus. For more information see bivalve and pseudofeces. Clams, like most mollusks, also have open circulatory systems, which means that their organs are surrounded by watery blood that contains nutrients and oxygen. Clams eat plankton by filter feeding, and they themselves are eaten by small sharks and squid.

Information

Translations: Ēdamais gliemezis, Moliuskas, Scoică de râu, Rak, Im hơi, Milczek, क्लैम, Molusco, Моллюск, Αχιβάδα, الكتوم, 대합, Škeble, Kerang, Paros, 蛤, Cloïssa, Kremna, Mušle, Mollusco, צדפה, Рак, アサリ, Palourde, Muschel, Musling, Almeja, Молюск, Simpukka, Мида

Physical Description

A clam's shell consists of two (usually equal) halves, which are connected by a hinge joint and a ligament which can be external or internal, much like a Venus Flytrap.In clams, two adductor muscles contract to close the shells. The clam has no head, and usually has no eyes, (scallops are a notable exception), but a clam does have kidneys, a heart, a mouth, and an anus.

Colors: Shell is Brown or White

Tasting Notes

Flavors: Chewy Texture,Mild, and Briny
Substitutes: Musseles, Cockles, Oysters, Scallops, Abalone

Selecting and Buying

Choosing: Clams can be collected fresh or purchase live clams that are tightly shut or will close when tapped lightly on the shell. They should smell clean, like the ocean.
Buying: Live clams are available year round at your local supermarkets, but they don’t stay fresh as long during the summer, when they are spawning.

Preparation and Use

Clams can be eaten raw, steamed, boiled, baked or fried; the method of preparation depends partly on the size and species of the clam.Whether it is in a chowder or raw on a bed of crushed ice, calms are great no matter what type they are.

Cleaning: Most clams available commercially have been cleaned, but if you dig your own, you must remove the sand and grit from inside the shell.

Conserving and Storing

Live clams in-the-shell will remain alive up to seven days in the refrigerator when stored between 38°F and 40°F in a container with a slightly open lid. Clams can be shucked and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to seven days. If using that day, after cleaning, refrigerate clams in a bowl, covered with a damp towel. Clams should be cooked as soon as possible. To freeze clams, remove clam meat from shells and wrap them in freezer paper or plastic; then over-wrap with a plastic bag. Store for up to two months.

Social/Political

In the south western coast of India, also known as the Konkan region, Clams are used to cook curries and side dishes, like Tisaryachi Ekshipi which is Clams with one shell on.

History: The word "clam" can be applied to freshwater mussels, and other freshwater bivalves, as well as marine bivalves.They are saltwater shellfish, so they can only be found on the coasts of shellfish bearing bodies of saltwater. The most plentiful abode for clams in North America is the American north east. Another area in the US that is clam heavy is the Pacific north west. Washington State has a thriving Razor clam harvesting industry there. Overseas, China is a major harvester of clams of every type.

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