A step by step instructional guide on how to campfire bake Freshwater Clams and Mussels.
Mussels, clams and other bivalves are aquatic filter feeders that line many of the world's banks and shorelines from marine seas and oceans to freshwater rivers, lakes and streams. This article will be focusing upon a primitive campfire baking method of cooking Clams and Mussels. Take a look at the following steps and consider this method of cooking the next time you find a source of Clams or Mussels. Survival situation or not, baking these shelled creatures are a nutritious and flavorful source of protein.
Note: Before engaging in "clamming," consult your local and federal laws concerning the many threatened and endangered species of freshwater clams and mussels. Remember that ignorance is not a viable defense if caught breaking the law.
Step 1: What You'll Need
Baking clams using a campfire is about as basic as you can get when it comes to surviving. The list of necessary materials is short. A campfire is needed, a flat rock or fireproof baking surface and the clams or mussels to be cooked.
Clamming is an activity that requires almost no preparation or forethought. At its most basic level, you'll need (1.) your hands to find and gather the clams and (2.) a bag/basket/container of some sort to store and carry the clams. Additional gear such as a snorkel, gloves, and other aquatic swimwear that can make the process more comfortable are options. You'll eventually develop preferences and technique according to the characteristics of your region as you go on. With these basic tools you're almost ready to begin Clamming.
Note: The minimalistic nature of clamming makes this form of meat acquisition an extremely important skill to have in survival situations.
Step 2: Locate a Suitable Body of Freshwater
Locating a suitable sites to engage in clamming can often be found much closer than imagined. Waterways and reservoirs are the lifeblood of humanity with the majority of cities and towns having been built around or near adequate water sources. Of these aquatic areas, a number of different shelled filter feeders can usually be found to have made their homes within their mud and sedimented banks. Depending upon the type and make-up of the bank, clam location might even be possible without getting wet.
Walk the banks on land to determine the layout of your area. Pay special attention to features such as fast moving waters and obstacles both on land and submerged below the water that could potentially pose a danger. While scouting you should also look for signs of clams and mussels as often times the shells can be visible on gravel banks, washed up on shore, or in shallow or dried areas where the clams have died and are easily visible open and atop the surface. Finding a few of the deceased clams/mussels can give an indication of what species and sizes might be found in the area.
Note: Not finding signs of clams/mussels does not mean that they are not present. Additionally, the species that you do find evidence of will likely be accompanied by other types of clams/mussels once you begin gathering under the water.
Step 3: Wade In and Begin Gathering
To gather clams/mussels, you are obviously going to have to get wet. If temperatures are low, be sure to have a fire or method of drying off and warming close at hand. Keeping close to the bank, begin to feel around for the contours under the water. Using hands to feel your way around will likely be the only way to sense and find your quandary. The most densely populated groups of clams/mussels are typically found in waters that are high in nutrients, which means that visibility is often poor.
Once you've gotten used to the water and gotten a feel for the lay of the bank it is time to egin your search. To begin, face the bank and with fingers spread rake the ground from bank pulling towards yourself.
Step 3: Grade your Clams/Mussels
Step : Watch this Video to See How It's Done