The Carapace Conundrum (Crustacean or Mollusk?)


If you’re like me, you LOVE shellfish.  But they’re not all the same…a fun icky fact for you:  CRUSTACEANS have shells that are grown from a carbohydrate that they manufacture themselves called chitin, just like insects (way back when they were related… )   We’re talking shrimp, prawns, lobster, crab here.

MOLLUSKS grow their shells from materials they eat -mostly calcium carbonate – that is found in marble and limestone (not to mention egggshells!).   Mollusks grow their shells once or twice a year when they need to (the house gets kinda cramped when they grow) during the warm months.  You can see their growing cycle on their shells – the rings.  So you can tell how old your clam (or mussel, or oyster, or scallop) is by counting the rings and multiplying by 1.5.    There are scores of fun shellfish and mollusk options on our menu at   Here’s to the party in your mouth!Risotto