Gh? is renowned for its delectable flavor and numerous health benefits. Our article provides useful tips for selecting and enjoying delicious clams!
1 Nutritional Values and Benefits of Clams
Nutritional Values of Clams
Clams are highly nutritious, surpassing the nutritional content of pork and fish. They contain essential vitamins such as A, B1, B2, C, as well as minerals like iron and calcium.
Health Benefits of Clams
- According to traditional Chinese medicine, clams have a sweet taste and are considered cooling and nourishing for the body. They are particularly beneficial for young children and the elderly.
- Good for Pregnant Women and Fetal Development: Clams contain fatty acids and proteins that support the pregnancy process and optimize the development of newborns.
- Good for Bones: The high phosphorus and calcium content in clams promote strong bones and teeth.
- Good for the Nervous System: Clams are rich in iron and vitamin B12, which contribute to red blood cell production and neurotransmitter synthesis.
2 How to Choose Fresh and Delicious Clams
Types of Clams to Buy
Green clams are the most flavorful and have firm and sweet meat. Red clams are also a good option. Spotted clams have less meat and a less pronounced taste.
Green clams have dark green shells with white streaks or dots.
Meaty Clams or Gritty Clams?
You can distinguish meaty clams from gritty clams based on their gender. Male clams usually have more meat, while female clams have more grit. You can choose according to your preferences.
Male clams have a small apron shaped like the letter Y.
Female clams have a larger, rounder apron.
Best Time to Buy Clams
The beginning and end of the lunar month offer the most fat and firm clam meat. Avoid purchasing clams in the middle of the lunar month as they may have shed their shells and developed a fishy smell.
Identifying Clams with Plenty of Meat and Firm Meat
Gently press the belly of the clam, excluding the apron. If the clam sinks, it indicates it is not fresh and has soft and potentially spoiled meat. A firm touch and slightly hard belly denote a clam with plenty of meat and relatively fresh and firm meat.
Check the tightness of the clam’s apron against its body. A tightly fitting apron indicates that the clam hasn’t spawned much, ensuring firm and sweet meat.
Avoid buying excessively large clams as their size does not necessarily determine taste or meat quality. Choose clams that fit comfortably in your hand, feel firm, and are heavier than expected. These indicate plenty of meat, sweetness, and firmness.
It is best to purchase live clams and store them in containers of water with oxygen tubes, flexible leg joints, and sharp spines.
3 Considerations when Eating Clams and Proper Clam Preservation
Clams are nutritious, but if they are not consumed properly, they can pose risks. Clams from polluted areas may contain toxins like dioxin and PCBs (Polychlorinated Biphenyls), which can cause skin rashes, immune system suppression, adverse effects on the nervous system, liver damage, and harm to pregnant women.
Eating raw clams may expose your body to bacteria that can cause food poisoning, such as Staphylococcus and Vibrio Parahaemocyticus. Individuals with high blood pressure, diabetes, or kidney disease should avoid consuming clams, as they may worsen these conditions.
To preserve raw clams, rinse them thoroughly and, if possible, place them in a clean styrofoam container before refrigerating. Pre-processed clams should be drained and stored in an airtight container or plastic bag before freezing, with a recommended storage period of 3-5 days.
4 Delicious Dishes Made from Clams
Clam porridge is a delightful dish loved by many. The tender and smooth clam meat, along with hot and fluffy porridge, and fragrant green onions create a delicious flavor.
Clam Hot Pot
This nutritious hot pot may appear complex but is actually simple to prepare. The inclusion of purple onions and green peppers helps eliminate the natural fishy smell of clams, resulting in a fragrant broth. The spicy yet sweet broth, when paired with vegetables and noodles, creates an unbeatable combination.
Salted Fried Clams
Clams are fried on a hot pan with a savory salty sauce that permeates each piece of clam meat. The thin layer of salt on the clam shell adds a salty and spicy taste, creating a perfect flavor.