Queen Snails: The Delicious and Beautiful Seashell of the Bahamas

The Bahamas, a Caribbean island country located on the west coast of the Atlantic Ocean, is rich in a variety of seafood, the most famous of which is the queen snail. The largest queen snail is about 30 centimeters long and weighs four to five catties. The fancy way of eating the queen snails has won the praise of many tourists who come here.

Queen snails grow slowly and take at least 5 years to mature. Compared with other snails, the queen snail is very long-lived, with a life span of 30 to 40 years. Adult queen snails carry a large, heavy, spiral-shaped shell with many short spines on the top and a pink interior. The local people make the meat of the queen snail into delicacies, and the snail shells are made into various exquisite handicrafts.

In Nassau, the capital of the Bahamas, fishing and selling queen snails and various fish and shrimp are sideline jobs for many locals who earn a lot of money. Every morning, people will put the freshest conch and so on on their own stalls in the fish market. When customers buy it, they will slaughter it and cut it into slices for customers to take away.

Fresh queen snails have firm flesh and a taste similar to squid. Whether it is made into a salad or deep-fried conch balls, the deliciousness of the conch meat will stimulate your taste buds the moment you eat it. However, those who don’t cook very much should not try to make queen snails lightly, because whether steamed or stir-fried, the meat quality of queen snails will easily become stale if you are not careful.

But don’t worry if you don’t know how to do it, the Bahamians have already studied the way of eating queen snails thoroughly, and it is indispensable in any local restaurant. There, you can taste the most authentic conch salad in Nassau, as well as crispy fried conch balls, delicious conch slices in coconut milk bisque, and conch burgers. Many local Chinese restaurants also do as the Romans do, and include queen snails on their menus. If you are not used to Western food, you might as well go to a Chinese restaurant to try boiled conch slices, salt and pepper conch slices or black bean sauce conch slices.

The Bahamians make the most of the queen conch. There is a handicraft store on the street not far from the center of Nassau, and you can see a variety of handicrafts as soon as you open the door. In addition to various satchels, straw hats and tableware with local characteristics woven with straw, the most eye-catching ones are necklaces, pendants, earrings and rings made of queen snail shells. Although it’s not cheap, almost every girl walks out of the store with a handicraft or two.

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