Rus Articles Journal

Edible cockleshells of

If had to be born in empires, then it is better as Brodsky wrote, to live in the province, by the sea. Besides other advantages, on the sandy coast in hours of outflow it is possible to collect edible cockleshells and to make for itself from them a simple and refined dinner.

the First acquaintance

For some nations, for example French, edible cockleshells - that for us mushrooms. We have chanterelles, honey agarics, birch mushrooms, at them - bigorno, to the ongla, petonkl, palurd... Art to understand them comprehend in the childhood, during long walks with parents on cold pebble beaches of Biarritz or Brittany when the sea casts ashore the stray inhabitants. Adults tell children what was learned once from parents and therefore often cockleshells remain in memory under ridiculous names - “buttons“, “marigold“, “sea haricot“, “saucers“. The main cunning with cockleshells, as well as with mushrooms, is in distinguishing edible from inedible, and it is precisely best of all for it to study everything at parents, but not according to books.

But very few people from us if only it did not spend the childhood in Alushta or Pitsunda, were so lucky. Most often at first we opened cockleshells not in literal, and in informative sense: from classics where there was a gray sky of Paris and the girl in blue were late for meetings in cafe; from a fantasy where “enigmatichny“ cockleshells occupied waters of alien oceans; from adventure novels in which heroes survived only thanks to mollusks...

you Remember Stephenson? “They have thoroughly a snack on the litodoma which opened sinks towards to the sun. They ate them as they eat oysters, and found that at these mollusks very sharp taste“. Or Hemingway:“ It reminded Hudson cold day in Marseille when they with the baron sat at a little table of cafe on the small street running to port and ate moules, breaking thin black shells which should be caught from the hot peppered milk soup with the kindled oil floating on it, saw wine from Tavel and looked how wind inflates skirts of fisherwomen“.

Really we got acquainted with cockleshells in the Crimean adolescence. The first independent (without parents!) trip to Koktebel, the casual invitation to a dinner to Ordzhonikidze - to eat rapan under mayonnaise. To Ordzhonikidze ten minutes by car on the highway - and four hours along the seashore, including sites of a way where it is necessary to go on a belt in water along rocks, battling against ruthless wind. Unless it is possible to forget those rapan?

Main kampf

- Rapana under mayonnaise - what bad manners! - my acquaintance, the native of Abkhazia speaks. - You know that they were never eaten? Same predators, they eat everything - gobbled up all the Black Sea mussels and oysters - and awfully smell. To prepare rapan thought up for visitors - that the good from production of cockleshells did not vanish.

- could not imagine

Ya in perfect amazement what is there, in silent depth, even among cockleshells there is such cruel fight for a survival - and such active life. Rapana eat mussels and snails, snails eat clams, such as cockleshells - razors, - and those should bury in sand or silt that they were not found. Some depart to a surf strip. Others as similar to Patella tarentina saucers, they the cockleshells, most popular in France, palurd, hide in crevices or, as graceful snails - Gibbula sockets (they bigorno), imitate plants in branches of seaweed.

Sea date - kamnetochets the sink as a drill, makes to itself minks in stones. Having got hungry, they get out of shelters and creep on stones, scraping off from them seaweed and microorganisms.

Each cockleshell found ashore is someone`s lodge, perhaps, left tens or hundred years ago. It is strange to think - history of someone`s life and fight. Other sea inhabitants - for example, crayfish - hermits - diogena often lodge in the left houses.

Edible cockleshells live in all seas and oceans, and also in the rivers and lakes and prefer everything - not the hottest places. For example, the most famous “shelly“ place in the world is Brittany where they not only are caught in large quantities for restaurants of all France, but also grow up on special farms. But if air temperature in Brittany falls below minus of five, mollusks taken from the ocean instantly perish and become inedible, and for fans of a sifud there come hard times.

of People with baskets, come for shelly trade, it is possible to see anywhere. In England - there about it scandal burst quite recently: in the County of Lancashire 20 emigrants - the Chinese collecting cockleshells in coastal waters died. On the coast of Atlantic from the Canadian province Labrador to South Carolina: on beaches many have a good time hunting for Jack - the Knife, a cockleshell of razor clam, bright, similar to the put penknife, which needs to be pulled out hands from silt and to pursue, without allowing to run away.

In the Far East - for example, on Sakhalin where now actively invite tourists and by all means at the same time is told how there is a lot of in coastal waters and lakes of cockleshells, - “all bottom is covered by them“. On deserted ocean coasts in Hugo - East India where brave adventurers still - exclusively just for the hell of it - go to rocks with knives...

I mollusks from around the world go to Japan. Because in Japan they are loved as anywhere. Shutters of sinks for sentimental Japanese represent harmony of two loving hearts so soup from cockleshells is always served to newlyweds during a wedding. In the well-known market of Tsukidzi it is possible to find all sea inhabitants what only exist in the world in the center Tokyo, - the connected snopikam as some asparagus or onions lie on counters. Japan - the second country after France in which the love to edible cockleshells is built in art. Where still it is possible to see such majestic picture: outflow bares ruins of the sunk Chinto`s temple, people fill them, finding edible cockleshells. Also it is necessary all this is snow top of Fuji...

By the way

Quite recently scientists - chemists began to study a riddle of glue of cockleshells - the most “dead“ glue in the world. Some types of cockleshells live colonies, covering with themselves reefs, moorings, piles, the sunk ships and the bottoms of vessels. “To become stronger“, they use glue: it is spun as threads; threads develop one to another, forming “beard“; this “beard“, so far it still soft, the cockleshell leans against the required object... And everyone who tried to tear off it, knows that it demands inhuman efforts. Scientists promise that such glue - biologically harmless, strong and waterproof - will become a new step in development of surgery: doctors will be able to refuse needles and threads.

Literary recipes

Questions: how to prepare, serve and eat cockleshells - raise a smile at French. It is like to ask us how to handle mushrooms. Like, that in it special?

If the cockleshell crude (as, for example, mussels or sea saucers) is not and not to prepare minutes as a separate dish (that most often and occurs), then it is necessary to add them to the latest turn and to cook one - three, at most five (depending on the size). The cockleshell which got to boiled water is already ready to the use and it is necessary to take out it as soon as it opens the sink.

the Catch was rich? Means, the best option - it is simple to weld cockleshells in broth. Carrots, celery roots which soften meat of cockleshells, rather dense in comparison with other sea reptiles, will be required and give them unforgettable aroma, and greens. All this it is necessary to boil minutes ten and then for a couple of minutes to throw in cockleshell broth. In the variable recipe still heavy cream and other young vegetables are added to the above, and then soup with surprisingly velvety taste turns out.

it is a dish give at seaside restaurants - accompanying obligatory with white wine (French especially recommend the Alsace gevyurtstraminer, wine with absolutely dizzy sweetish aroma).