The Niantic Bay Scallop: Techniques and Recipes
We are always being asked the “best way” to prepare our bay scallops. We prefer to either steam our scallops or eat them raw. Many people favor sauteeing their scallops as you would with wild-caught bay scallops or sea scallops. Following are the techniques we use and our go-to recipes for each preparation method!
Our go-to way to cook up a bag of Niantic Bay Scallops! Steaming scallops makes for an easy appetizer served with a loaf of bread or a quick but exquisite dinner when served over a plate of linguini. With the petite size of our scallops, you are able to consume the entirety of the scallop, unlike their larger counterparts that are traditionally shucked before eating. Steaming scallops in their shells is done in the same manner as steaming mussels or littleneck clams. In fact, when experimenting with new recipes, we suggest searching “steamed mussel recipes” and simply replacing (or supplementing) the mussels with scallops. As the scallops cook you will see their shells begin to gape open and the innards will pull into themselves, naturally loosening themselves from the shell.
Steamed Scallops with Garlic and Parsley
25 count bag Niantic Bay Scallops in shell, rinsed
3 Tbsp. Butter
1 Shallot, finely chopped
3 Garlic Cloves, finely chopped
1 tsp. Red Pepper Flakes
1/4 cup Dry White Wine
1 Lemon, juiced, plus extra for serving
1/4 cup Fresh Parsley, finely chopped
Kosher Salt, to taste
Melt butter over medium heat in a large skillet. Once melted, add shallots, garlic, and red pepper flakes. Cook a few minutes or until the garlic is fragrant.
Add wine and bring to a simmer.
Add scallops, cover with a lid, and let the scallops steam for 5-7 minutes or until they have opened up.
Add the juice of one lemon, stir the scallops, and cook for another 1-2 minutes, uncovered. Transfer the scallops to a serving bowl, along with cooking liquid. Discard any scallops that are still closed.
Sprinkle with parsley and salt, to taste. Garnish with additional lemon wedges. Serve with crusty bread slices, if desired.
Consuming Niantic Bay Scallops raw is another of our favorite ways to enjoy our petite bay scallops. While the gills and organs are perfectly edible (and enjoyed by many in their raw form) shucked scallops is the traditional way to enjoy them raw in the United States. To learn to shuck bay scallops, read our previous blog on preparing bay scallops. After you have shucked your scallops, you may replace the entire loosened meat in its shell, or cut the meat into smaller slices and array the smaller pieces on the shell. Serve immediately on a plate or on a bed of shaved ice. We recommend topping each meat with a drop of lemon and extra-virgin olive oil OR try our wasabi dressing recipe.
Raw Scallops with Wasabi Dressing
25 Niantic Bay Scallops
2 Tbsp. Vegetable Oil
1 1/2 Tbsp. Fresh Lime Juice
1 tsp. Minced Ginger
1 Tbsp. Wasabi
Shuck scallops and cut each adductor muscle into four pieces, arrange pieces on scallop shell.
In a small bowl whisk together the vegetable oil, lime juice, ginger, and wasabi. Add a few turns of salt to taste.
Spoon a small amount of the dressing over each scallop.
Serve and Enjoy!
While searing fresh, plump sea scallops on the stove or on the grill is one of our favorite delicacies to add to a salad, pasta dish, or enjoy on their own, our petite bay scallops function a little differently. To saute your scallops you will first need to shuck them. A bag of 25 scallops results in about a 1/3 cup of meat, not much yield for the work you put in to shucking them, but a delicious treat nonetheless. Because of their petite size, getting a good sear will probably not work out, but sauteing them will still give you a great flavor. Whether topping off your salad or a plate of pasta, do not mix the scallops into the dish as they may break apart and lose some of their "awesomeness".
Simple Sauteed Niantic Bay Scallops
25 Niantic Bay Scallops, shucked
4 Tbsp. Butter
2 Cloves Garlic, sliced
1 Sprig of Fresh Rosemary or Thyme, optional
Heat a skillet over medium-high heat.
Melt butter and add sliced garlic and the sprig of rosemary or thyme, if using.
Add shucked scallops and cook for about two minutes before tossing scallops and sauteeing for another two minutes.
Discard garlic & herbs.
Serve over pasta or salad.
See Also, The Niantic Bay Scallop: Preparing Your Scallops