There is something just extra-fancy about a scallop on the half-shell, and these are not only beautiful, but delicious. The scallops are cleaned, with one half of the shell removed and nothing remaining but the supremely edible scallop mussel that we know and love. The scallop is still attached to the shell but once it's cooked it slides right off.
We've served these many times and I'm continually impressed with the sweetness of flavor and tender texture of these little guys - they are fabulous. What they *won't* do is fill you up after a long day of being an impending Holiday Champion. These are appetizers, and something to savor while the bulk of your meal is being prepared.
Sustainable farmed, Peruvian half shell scallops hardly need a 'recipe' and are ridiculously simple, taking about 8 minutes of time from start to serve, and inspiring exclamations of joy from the delicious flavors. And.. this treat has a bonus! When the morsel is gone you are left with a beautiful, functional shell to wash and re-use or re-purpose.
One scallop serves as a single bite, an 'amuse bouche' of sorts. We prepared ours two ways: with fresh grated parmesan cheese, and also with a dab of compound butter. (We used a truffle butter, but the garlic dill butter we have available would be nice, too!) Other suggestions might look like a dab of pesto, or a Rockefeller-type stuffing mixture to add volume to the bite.
Once your scallops are topped, place them on a baking dish and bake at 375 for 5 minutes, then turn the broiler on and broil the tops for an additional one minute.
These can be served as 'finger food' or with a little dish of toothpicks or fancy cocktail forks (they have beautiful seafood forks at Drees
!) to slide off the shell and pop in your mouth. Serve with a tiny glass of bubbly champagne (The Wine Loft has my very favorite - Larmandier-Bernier) and enjoy!