South Dennis Quahog Pearl

by Gwenn Friss

SOUTH DENNIS - Joan Thomas was chopping quahog meat for chowder this summer when she felt something hard.

"I was putting the meat into the grinder, and I felt a lump in one of them. And there it was. I thought, 'What the heck is this?'" recalls Thomas, who had purchased four dozen quahogs from her job at Aquacultural Research Corp, a quahog hatchery in Dennis.

What Thomas found that day was a pearl. Literally.

Less common than the ones found in oysters, the quahog's purple pearl is generally dark purple, blending into lavender and then a creamy white. Thomas figured this 3- to 4-year-old bivalve must have had a lot of stress in its young life.

Read entire article, see a photo of Joan's pearl and get Joan's Quahog Chowder recipe here.

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