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March 01, 2012

March Fish of the Month: Farmed Clam

Your seafood choices can have a big impact on the health of our oceans and lakes – so make sure they’re positive ones! Every month, Shedd’s Right Bite team highlights a sustainable seafood option that’s both good for you and our planet. The Fish of the Month for March isn't a fish, but it's just as tasty—the farmed clam.

Farmed clams are considered a “Best Choice” on Shedd’s sustainable seafood wallet guide because they’re responsibly raised, with minimal environmental impact or pollution. In fact, clam farms can actually enhance the surrounding habitat by removing excess nutrients from the water. Clams are filter feeders, which means that they suck in ocean water (up to eight gallons an hour!) and feed on the microscopic plankton that it contains.

Be sure to try our Fish of the Month recipe: mushroom pappardelle with clams, and check out the latest episode of “Cooking the Right Bite Way” to see step-by-step instructions on how to prepare this dish. This was the Right Bite team’s favorite during a recent session of recipe testing. We think you’ll be “happy as a clam” that you tried it!


Mushroom Pappardelle with Clams
Serves 4

1 package of dry pappardelle
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup chopped mushrooms
2 shallots, thinly sliced
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 tablespoon chopped rosemary
2 lbs. farmed clams, scrubbed
¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 teaspoon lemon zest
¾ cup dry white wine
Salt and pepper
¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons parsley, chopped

1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
2. Drop the pappardelle in the boiling water and cook 6 to 8 minutes, or until al dente.
3. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a separate sauté pan over medium-high heat.
4. Add mushrooms and shallots, and sauté for 1 to 2 minutes.
5. Add the garlic and rosemary, and sauté another 1 to 2 minutes.
6. Add clams, red pepper, lemon and wine to the pan. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
7. Immediately cover with a lid and cook for 7 to 8 minutes, or until the clams open.*
8. Strain the pasta and toss with the remaining olive oil and Parmesan cheese.
9. Plate pasta and top with clam sauce, garnish with parsley and serve immediately.

*For your safety, throw out any clams that did not open during cooking process.

Posted by Brooke Havlik and Karolina Wasilewska, Great Lakes and Sustainability

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