Rich and creamy clam chowder served in a sourdough bowl is as much a San Francisco tradition as cable cars and foggy mornings. Clams are available year round at the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market, generally farmed in Tomales Bay. Clam farming is an extremely sustainable enterprise, as clams feed on microscopic plants and particles of organic matter found in the water, naturally filtering it and removing excess nitrogen in the process. Amateur clam enthusiasts can grab a spade and dig for wild clams in the mudflats of Bodega Bay or Marin?s Dillon Beach.

Preparations for clams range from the easy (steamed in white wine and served with melted butter or tossed into pasta) to the more the complex (paella and bouillabaisse). No matter how you prepare them, clams are rich in protein, iron, and B12, and low in contaminants such as mercury.