Tag Archives: Sakhalin Surf Clam

Shellfish species 12: Japanese Ivory Shell-Japanese Babylon Shell/Baigai


The Japan Blog List

Please check Shizuoka Gourmet Blog for all the gastronomy in Shizuoka Prefecture!

—————————————————-

BAIGAI-1

Japanese Ivory Shell/Japanese Babylon Shell are known as Bai, Baigai, Isobai in Japanese.
They are just in season now as we see them over the counters from Spring to Summer.
They used to very common and found all over Japan, but unfortuantely too many have been caught or killed by pollution in recent years.
The biggest specimens are caught off Toyama fairly deep where they can attain 15cm length and weigh as much as 300g.

BAIGAI-2

The most popular way of eating them is to first boil them in water and soy sauce and serve them cold.

BAIGAI-SASHIMI

But the Japanese apprecaite them very much raw as sashimi and

BAIGAI-SUSHI

sushi!

There must be a good reason for the Japanese to call them “Kai no Oosama/King of Shelfish”!

Shellfish species 11: Surf Clam/Ubagai


The Japan Blog List

Please check Shizuoka Gourmet Blog for all the gastronomy in Shizuoka Prefecture!

—————————————————-

UBAGAI-1

“Ubagai” or more commonly called “Hokkigai” when served as sashimi or sushi have many names in English.
Member of the Trough Shells Groups, they are called Surf Clams, or more precisely, as pertains to the varieties eaten in Japan, either Japanese Surf Clams or Sakhalin Surf Clams as they are collected both along Japan and Sakhalin Islands shores

8,000 tonnes are caught in Japan every year. 94% of fresh/live Surf Clams are collected in Hokkaido, Aomori, Fukushima and Miyagi Prefectures.
About 4,000 tonnes are imported frozen from Canada.
They are popular dried, in soups or cooked with vegeatbles and rice.

UBAGAI-2

Their “tongues” can be appreciated as sashimi, but are most popular lightly poached and cooled down.

UBAGAI-3

That is the way they are usually processed before being served as sushi nigiri, either straight, or with a few small incisions for better effect!