23.8.11

Gathering Mussels In Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, Canada

Mussels are a prevalent seafood found 'wild' in saltwater rivers along the Canadian Atlantic ocean. Mussels are mollusks and filter iron from seawater to produce an adhesive plaque which they use to attach themselves to rocks and seaweed.  In low-tied they are easily gathered in ‘mussel beds’ found in shallow water or under clumps of seaweed that is still alive but not underwater.



After gathering the mussels we rinsed them with water and made sure to removed all the small rocks, pebbles and seaweed.
Wild caught mussels have 'beards'- a bristly growth on the seam of the shell- used to attach themselves to rocks. It is a bit labor intensive but the best way to remove the beard is to pull it off, towards the hinged part of the shell, with your fingers.  
This should be done immediately before cooking.  


Mussels are a good source of Selenium which stimulates the metabolism and immune system and protects cells from free radical damage.  They are high in vitamin B12, zinc, folic acid, iron and calcium. 

When gathering wild mussels it is important to be informed as to the conditions of the water- areas that are free of bacteria and have constant moving water are ideal.  When in doubt ask!

We seamed ours in a pot with some carrots at the bottom- a cup of white wine, garlic, onions, diced tomatoes and herbs from the garden.  Mussels don't need water added to them as they will cook in their own water.  Make sure to save the water to use as a nutritious stock.  
From the pot

To the table
Do you like to eat mussels? 
What is your favorite way to cook them/eat them?

21 comments:

Clair said...

These look yummy. Enjoyed viewing the gathering and cooking process.
I want some!

mermaid gallery said...

love mussels! but unfortunately they are usually frozen when we start cooking. I usually put them frozen in a pan and drip garlic butter on them and then top with a dash of white wine....then bake in a hot oven...yummy....

David Toms said...

Steamed in white wine with garlic and parsley!

Your little fellows are certainly enjoying themselves! What great experiences you give your children!

le blÖg d'Ötli said...

Mussels in Brussels ;) You have to taste that!

;) I really like mussels and I can see you had a very nice moment! And "gourmand".

Art For Little Hands said...

We were just in Cape Brenton a few weeks ago. I loved that area. I told my husband I wanted to live there. It is so beautiful. We didn't do anything like this and now I am wishing we had. How fun.

Mama Gone Green said...

Glad you are back! Looks like a fun adventure...

Nuit said...

you guys are Pro's!!! they do look yummy, I like mussels a lot. Thanks for sharing this little adventure, looks so much fun! x

jeanette from everton terrace said...

Nope, not me. I'm a vegetarian who doesn't even eat fish. I just never took to it, haven't liked it all my life. I suppose growing up in the Arizona desert might have something to do with it :)

Krystal said...

oh man, that looks so fun..I'd love to do that!

The PvdH Journal said...

Oh I love mussels but I dont eat them very often because I am terrified of their source (so many scary stories!). Very jealous of yours!!!


PvdH

www.ThePvdHJournal.com

la petite coquine said...

Oh, how delicious-I just adore mussles in the summertime, especially in paella!

The Barefoot Crofter said...

So delicious. I usually steam them with a drop of white wine, cream and a chopped shallot thrown in, but the other week we had them straight off the barbecue and they were heavenly. xxx

Nikki said...

Yum! I LOOOVE mussells. The best ones I ever had was when we were backpacking on the coast. My genius Dad brought a little garlic and butter and we steamed them over the campfire.

demie said...

i remember many years ago in Greece. we use to eat them row, just after we brought them from the searocks. we just had some drops of lemon on them. does it sound crazy? it was delicious! but we knew it was safe on our waters. one can get realy ill from mussels...
love your yellow rubbeboots by the way : )

Mo Pie, Please said...

I have never eaten a mussel that I can recall. I'm afraid of them! I'm not a very adventurous eater, that's probably obvious though!

romwe said...

I never try them but certainly collecting them is of great fun,sometimes I do my uncle's favor...(I am shocked to know that somebody eats them row,wow, incredible)

Linda said...

My daughter absolutely loves mussels and would she love to go on an adventure like that. We like to eat them in a red sauce with garlic and parsley, lots of bread to soak up the sauce after. Thanks for sharing!

Cashon&Co said...

ok, that is SO cool. and not to mention that you look TOO cute in your yellow wellies. I love having two boys, don't you? fun. :)

Vintage is for Lovers said...

How amazing!! I want to do this with our monkeys some day!! I love, love, love all shellfish!! James ate some mussels and clams on our trip. He loved them just as much as his Mama!! This is so great! Thanks for sharing all of the interesting information as well! xo Samantha

Valarie said...

I grew up on the Oregon coast and we would always go and gather mussels. It was one of our favorite things to do. Your's look so good. Enjoy!

Shari said...

They sure are fun to gather and eat. Did your monkeys eat them?

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