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Wild BC Scallops - Pink and Spiny - Recipe Research

I picked up 2lbs of frozen Wild BC Scallops from Skipper Otto.

Now I need to do some research on how to prepare them.

Skipper Otto introduced them back in Dec 2017:

Wild BC scallops are abundant, sustainable, and Ocean Wise recommended! Did you know there was a wild fishery for them? Most people probably don’t! And if there ever was a fishing family uniquely positioned to advocate for the sustainable harvest of these shellfish, it’s Melissa and Joel.

A multi-generational fisherman, Joel began fishing scallops in 2015 alongside his uncle. His wife, Melissa, a marine biologist, recently became involved in helping the family market their catch. According to Melissa and Joel’s website, “the harvest of scallops began as an experimental fishery in 2001. Joel’s Aunt and Uncle were a part of the experimental fishery for over 15 years and were dedicated to developing environmentally sound fishing practices. By 2009 Fisheries and Oceans Canada began the process of developing an Integrated Fisheries Management Plan (IFMP) for the commercial harvest of scallops.” And the family has been fishing scallops responsibly ever since.

And the fishermen, West Coast Wild Scallops, have a recipe page on their site with basic recipes.

Also from the fishermen:

We harvest two wild species of scallops, Pink and Spiny scallops, found off of Vancouver Island, BC. They are also commonly known as ‘Swimming’, ‘Pink’, or ‘Singing’ scallops. They are significantly smaller than the species commonly eaten. They have a beautiful and colourful shell, measuring up to 8 cm (3 in.) across.

A Quadra Island supplier has usage tips and recipes on their website – several sites seem to say to cook them like clams or mussels:

Swimming Scallops are cooked frozen. DO NOT THAW prior to cooking. Do not remove mantle. Swimming Scallops are cooked and served like mussels.

Steam frozen scallops in steam, boiling water, or broth for 3 - 4 minutes. Once the shells open, the scallops are ready for eating. While cooking turn the contents of the pot so the scallops on the bottom can be free of the weight of the scallops on top and can therefore open up.


It turns out to be really hard to search for, since most scallops are bay scallops or larger sea scallops, both sold out of the shell.

“Swimming scallops” seems to be the general term for these wild BC scallops, with a mix of pink and spiny swimming scallops being what I have.

Pink Swimming Scallops with Tomato-Lemon Compote

From Blue Water Cafe

  • 28 fresh pink swimming scallops
  • 12 Roma tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 shallots, sliced
  • 1 clove garlic, sliced
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 Tbsp chopped capers
  • 2 Tbsp chopped parsley
  • Pinch of sugar
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 3/4 cup dry bread crumbs
  • 1 Tbsp thyme leaves