Thursday, August 20, 2009

Not in my pool please!

OK in the quest to learn Australian sea-food I find myself at page 596 of Stephanie Alexander's The Cook's Companion. Encountering Pipis. Which are not quite what I assumed a million French tourist were doing in the sea at Nice. Which my further research tell me one may use a rake to harvest in South Australia... but although I may gather them in Tasmania, there's a nix on rakes. Now I've dug for Donax serra (white sand mussel) with my feet, at night, chest deep in the freezy waves of Blouberg strand. Sometimes your toes feel a lump that's a sand mussel, and sometimes a lump that's a crab. Fun! I've dug with my hands for another clam species up at Saldanha (v.different habitat- just inside the very small ripple top of tide ripple.) Where doth the pipi lurk? and how do you draw it from the briny? with offers of a walk or discussion of shoes, of ships, of sealing wax, of cabbages and kings... ?


  1. Where doth the pipi lurk?

    New Zealand estuaries.

    Cockles, on the other hand...

  2. well cockles then. But I refer you to

  3. <shrug> It's a term I've only heard in New Zealand. Then again, it's all shellfish to me.

    [Not a great fan of seafood, especially molluscs, I'm afraid.]

  4. Dad catches fish using pippies (you know you are in a fisherman's car when you find the rotten pippy under the seat).

    Not many of us eat them in NSW, mainly used for bait.

  5. my uncle took us pipi hunting when we were younger along the NSW North Coast.

    I don't know if his methods were traditional aboriginal or not, but the burgers he made from them after certainly were not!

    If I remember correctly, we walked along the shoreline looking for breathing holes, then dug them out, sometimes with our feet, sometimes using a stick or shovel - whatever we had to hand.

    I think the tide had to be going out, but it was a long time ago, so don't quote me on that!

  6. Thank you! at least I have some idea now. I have collected clams at the tide line like that (but only in special places). However the other cockle type thing was abundant - but chest deep in rough water.