Qualicum Beach Scallops

Wed, 03/04/2015
Fish 411

Cultured Qualicum Bay scallops have emerged as a sustainable alternative to commercial dredged scallops that harm the ocean floor. These Ocean Wise bivalves are grown in mesh bags or trays suspended from secured floatation devices in nutrient-rich Georgia Strait. As filter feeders, Qualicum Bay scallops draw in tiny plant and animal plankton through their gills.

Available year round, Qualicum Bay scallops have an ivory to pinkish-white meat that is shiny and firm; their aroma is both sweet and briny. They’re harvested daily, cleaned, graded, and shipped within 24 hours of harvesting. When buying them, look for bright, vibrant colour with a firm texture.

Flavour wise, they’re meaty yet yielding, clean tasting, and uncommonly sweet. Most cooks treat them simply with a good outer sear in a hot pan on medium-high heat, leaving them still tender and rare to nearly raw at the centre… almost akin to cooking a good steak.