A strange alien like creature lurking under the ocean sand that’s fun to hunt and yummy to eat!
Razor clams can be found along the coasts of Ireland and are great fun to catch! One good tip to consider before you start, would be to check the beach for razor shells. If there are a lot of empty shells by the beach there will more than likely be clams hiding under the sand further out.
Razor clams can be a little tricky to find as they hide under the sand. The best time to forage for clams are during low tide, particularly spring tide, which is a lower tide than normal. It’s best to pick them during the months that have the letter ‘R’ in them.
Tread lightly on the sand because the clams sense the vibrations of your approaching steps and will dig themselves downwards.
Look for key hole shaped openings in the sand, the clams will be a few inches under. Occasionally if you survey your surroundings you will see water squirting out of the holes by the clams. Pour a generous amount of salt into the holes and poke it down with your finger so it will flow downwards (see video above). The clam will slowly emerge from hiding. Gently pull it up, not so fast as you may break off it’s foot.
Happy but cold after a morning of foraging for Atlantic razor clams!
Recipe: Razor Clam with Rocket Leaves and Chilli
- Razor Clams
- A glug of white wine
- A knob of butter
- Olive oil
- One garlic clove
- Lemon juice
- Rocket leaves
- Basil leaves
- Salt and pepper
There’s no need to over complicate cooking razor clams. The above ingredients can be varied, we used rocket and basil but the green leaves can be replaced with whatever floats your boat.
Before we cooked our clams we cleaned them of any grit or sand and purged them for about 20 hours in sea water. This allows the clams to expel any grit it contains within it’s shell.
Heat a pan, add a knob of butter and some of olive oil. Add a clove of chopped garlic and half a chilli. Place the clams on the pan and pour in about 1/3 of a glass of white wine. Squeeze a little lemon over the clams, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook until the clam shells open, about three minutes. Remove the stomach by pulling the dark coloured flesh away from the long white flesh of the foot. Place the clams on a plate with some rocket leaves and drizzle with the liquid from the pan. Serve with buttered warm toast.
Razor clams are slightly tougher than scallops but quite a bit sweeter. Yum!
I love the eerie music… I’m not sure I could catch and eat them though, I hear cries of “Please don’t eat us, we come in peace!”
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Ha! It’s funny you should say that because sometimes they do let off little cries, not unlike a mouses squeak!
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Can you recommend any Cork beaches that are good for razor clams?
Hi William, I’m afraid I don’t! Keep an eye out for razor clam shells washed up on the beach/shore – it’s a good indicator there’s clams in the area. A spring tide is soon upon us – it’s the best time to find razor clams!