When steaming clams or mussels, discard any that do not open
August 25, 2013
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It’s widely believed that when you are steaming clams or mussels, any that do not open must be discarded. Turns out it is usually a waste of perfectly good shellfish. An unopened clam may be bad, or the shell full of mud, but in my experience they are usually fine. What I do is set the unopened ones aside and deal with them separately. In almost all cases they are very easy to open with a blunt knife and the little feller inside is just fine. When you do find a bad one, out it goes. If you find more than a very occasional bad one, you might want to buy your clams elsewhere.
As an aside, fresh clams/mussels should always be stored in the fridge in a ventilated container, never a sealed plastic bag. They are alive and use some oxygen – not much, but a sealed bag will suffocate them and then you will have a bunch of bad clams!