Is it safe to eat clams that are open before cooking?
Then, is it OK to eat mussels that are open before cooking?
Myth: Mussels have gone bad if they are open before cooking. Fact: Mussels that are open before cooking are most likely still alive. Give them a tap either with your finger or on the side of a bowl and wait for the shell to close up. If the shell does not close after tapping, then discard.
Additionally, do clams open on their own? Live clams can be slightly open, but in order to check that they are still alive, you need to tap them lightly- a live one will close right up. If it stays ajar, it's dead. The clam uses muscles to open/close its shell, and when those muscles are relaxed it can cause the clam to open *very slightly*.
Also question is, what happens when clams don't open?
If your clams do not open during cooking, don't force them open, they likely arrived dead or full of mud so they should be discarded. Clams steamed in wine with butter and herbs.
Why shouldn't you eat closed mussels?
Unopened mussels were dead from the start, and are unsafe to eat. All mussels need to be gently pried open to eat, but if the shell is so tightly closed you need a crowbar, it means that one is no good.