Featured Food: Geoduck

I know who are wonderfully what these are and how do you pronounce this. They are pronounced, ‘gooey-duck’. They are a type of large clam. Naturally I saw them on a cooking show, and the name stuck in my head. My curiosity got the best of me so I decided to do some digging. I do have to admit I didn’t necessarily find the information I was looking for, but I realized I’d seen it on Anthony Bourdain and Bizarre Foods.

I know they don’t look that appealing, but supposedly they are quite delicious, Asian cultures have really taken a fancy with them (notably China and Japan). Here though they’re still a delicacy or a Northwest tradition. Oh yeah, that’s where they harvest geoduck, along the Northwest coast of Washington, Oregon, Alaska and British Columbia. There is also a lot of controversy surrounding this mollusk (think of it a large clam), from poaching to farming to sustainability. I however was interested in the animal itself. Did you know the geoduck is one of the longest-living organisms with a life expectancy about 150. Also they can boast that they are the largest burrowing clam in the world, munching on plankton.

Finding nutritional information was more challenging. We have to think of them like we would a clam. Naturally foods coming from the ocean seem to have a pretty good rep in the health world. They are a good source of protein, plus vitamins and minerals like vitamin B12 and iron.

If you’re in the Northwest or are out somewhere and geoduck is available I don’t see the harm in trying (if you get past the initially response). They say they are tasty, a savory crunchy delicacy. Andrew Zimmerman referred to them as ‘ocean candy’.

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