Eating geoduck raw gave me a deep appreciation for this strange looking big clam; it’s as much about texture as flavor. Crunchy, sweet yet ocean-y, and clammy. No wonder this bivalve is adored in China, where prices fetch $50 per pound or more.
Begin your first taste of geoduck with sashimi. Then move onto other raw preparations, such as crudo or this excellent ceviche.
1 live Taylor Shellfish geoduck, about 1 pound (We’ll only use the siphon or “neck” meat for this recipe—save the belly for the Geoduck Fritters, thinly sliced)
2 Tbsp Salt
1 lemon, quartered
1 small carrot, julienned
Begin by filling a small stock pot or large sauce pan (something big enough to hold the geoduck) half full with water and bring to a boil. Insert a sharp knife between the shell and the clam and cut the shell free. Repeat on the other side. You will now be able to see the entire naked clam with its viscera. Simply grab the viscera and pull it away from the body; it will separate quite easily. Trim away any remaining innards until the belly looks clean and neat.
The geoduck’s siphon is encased in a tough membrane that should be removed before eating. This is why we blanch geoduck: to facilitate removal of the neck casing much like we would blanch a tomato to ease removal of its skin. Pick up the clam from its belly and dunk the neck into the boiling water, being careful to keep the belly meat above the water line so it doesn’t cook. Blanch the neck for about 10-15 seconds then immediately submerge the geoduck into a bowl of ice water to halt cooking. Once cooled, you can strip that tough membrane from the siphon cleanly and easily, much like removing a latex glove from your hand. Cut off the dark tip of the siphon, as this can be tough and chewy.
Cut the siphon in half lengthwise. Fill a hotel pan or a large casserole pan with cold water and the salt. Drop the two halves of the geoduck siphon into the cold, salted water and lightly scrub. (This will clean the meat.) Thinly slice the neck meat on a bias, then squirt 1 wedge of lemon over the meat and toss with your hands.
Divide the geoduck sashimi onto two plates, then garnish each with carrots and serve with soy sauce, wasabi and ginger.