Bivalves: A Sustainable Seafood Delight

Welcome back, food enthusiasts! Today, we’re diving deep into the world of bivalves – a fascinating category of shellfish that includes clams, mussels, oysters, and scallops. Bivalves might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of seafood, but they are a culinary treasure worth exploring. In this blog, we’ll explore what bivalves are, why you should consider adding them to your diet, their sustainability, and their health impacts.

What Are Bivalves?

Bivalves are a class of marine and freshwater mollusks characterized by their two-part hinged shells. These shells are connected by a flexible ligament and can be tightly closed to protect the delicate creature inside. Bivalves are filter feeders, which means they extract tiny plankton and other particles from the water, making them vital contributors to aquatic ecosystems.

Why Eat Bivalves?

  1. Delicious Flavors: Bivalves offer a diverse range of flavors and textures, from the sweet, briny taste of oysters to the tender, succulent meat of scallops. They are versatile ingredients that can be prepared in countless ways – grilled, steamed, baked, or even raw.
  2. Nutrient-Rich: Bivalves are a nutritional powerhouse. They are rich in essential nutrients such as protein, vitamins (B12, zinc, and iron), and omega-3 fatty acids. These nutrients support overall health, including brain function and cardiovascular health.
  3. Low in Fat and Calories: If you’re looking for a healthy, low-calorie protein source, bivalves are an excellent choice. They are low in fat and calories, making them a great option for those watching their weight.
  4. Sustainable Choice: Bivalves are among the most sustainable seafood options available. Their farming and harvesting methods have minimal environmental impact, making them a responsible choice or conscious consumers.

Sustainability of Bivalves

Bivalves are champions of sustainability for several reasons:

  1. Minimal Environmental Impact: Bivalve aquaculture involves growing these shellfish in controlled environments such as coastal farms. This method has a low ecological footprint, with little to no negative impact on surrounding ecosystems.
  2. Natural Filtration: Bivalves naturally filter water, helping to improve water quality by removing excess nutrients and algae. They play a critical role in maintaining the health of aquatic environments.
  3. Efficient Feed Conversion: Bivalves are highly efficient at converting the food they consume into protein, requiring fewer resources than other forms of aquaculture.
  4. Short Lifecycle: Bivalves have a relatively short lifecycle, meaning they reproduce and grow quickly, reducing the pressure on wild populations.

Health Impacts of Bivalves

Incorporating bivalves into your diet can have several health benefits:

  1. Heart Health: The omega-3 fatty acids in bivalves help reduce the risk of heart disease by lowering cholesterol levels and decreasing inflammation.
  2. Brain Function: Bivalves are rich in vitamin B12, which is crucial for brain health. Adequate B12 intake can improve memory and cognitive function.
  3. Iron and Zinc: Bivalves are excellent sources of iron and zinc, important for maintaining energy levels and a strong immune system.
  4. Lean Protein: Bivalves provide lean protein that supports muscle growth and repair, making them an ideal option for athletes and active individuals.


Bivalves are a culinary delight that offers not only exceptional flavors but also a host of health benefits. Their sustainability makes them an ethical choice for seafood lovers. So, whether you’re savoring a plate of steamed mussels or enjoying fresh oysters on the half-shell, remember that you’re not only indulging your taste buds but also making a responsible choice for the planet. Hungry?

Shell fish and culinary argan oil: a delightful combination

It pairs the rich flavors of the sea with the nutty, aromatic notes of argan oil. Here are two delicious recipes:

1. Grilled Garlic Lemon Shrimp with a drizzle of Culinary Argan Oil:


  • 1 pound large peeled and deveined shrimp
  • 2-3 minced garlic cloves
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 2-3 tablespoons culinary argan oil
  • chopped fresh parsley


  1. Make a marinade: mix together the minced garlic, lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and pepper.
  2. Add the cleaned shrimp to the marinade and let it sit for about 20 minutes to absorb the flavors.
  3. Preheat a grill to medium-high heat. Thread the marinated shrimp onto skewers.
  4. Grill the shrimp for about 2-3 minutes per side or until they turn pink and slightly charred.
  5. Once grilled, arrange the skewers on a serving platter. Drizzle the culinary argan oil over the top.
  6. Garnish with chopped fresh parsley and serve. This dish pairs wonderfully with a side of couscous or a green salad.

Grilled garlic lemon shrimp on a skewer

2. Linguine with Clams and Culinary Argan Oil:


  • 12 oz linguine pasta
  • 2 dozen local Little Neck clams, scrubbed and rinsed
  • 3 tablespoons culinary argan oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • Red pepper flakes (optional, for a spicy kick)
  • Salt and black pepper
  • Grated Parmesan cheese


  1. Cook the linguine Al Dente, according to package instructions. Drain and set aside.
  2. In a large skillet, heat the culinary argan oil over medium heat. Add the minced garlic and sauté for about 1 minute until fragrant.
  3. Add the clams to the skillet and pour in the white wine. Cover the skillet with a lid and let the clams steam for 5-7 minutes or until they open. Discard any clams that do not open.
  4. Season the clam mixture with red pepper flakes (if using), salt, and black pepper. Toss in the cooked linguine and fresh parsley. Stir well to combine and let it simmer for a couple of minutes to meld the flavors.
  5. Transfer the linguine with clams to a serving dish and drizzle with a bit more argan oil for extra flavor.
  6. Serve hot with grated Parmesan cheese on top and crusty bread on the side for soaking up the delicious sauce.

These recipes highlight the versatility of culinary argan oil, enhancing the natural flavors of shellfish while adding its own unique nutty aroma. Enjoy your seafood culinary adventure!

Linguini with clams

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