Hunting for scallops is like playing in an Easter egg hunt. The treasure you’re looking for is the orange “lip” that is on the edge of the shell (unpictured directly below – pictured two photos down) before it closes and camouflages like a rock (Our scallops in California are called Rock Scallops). The trick is to dive below them before the current and waves tell the scallop to close (both out of instinct for survival and because Rock Scallops are filter feeders, so they close in hopes of eating something).
Many people like their scallops different – I find ours has a different water content than the east coast Diver Scallops and are not suitable for sautéing. They are fantastic in ceviche or raw. The most satisfying way to eat them is right after you’ve pried them off the rock. In the ocean. The scallop is already salty and perfect.
But if you decide to come out of the water, pair with a nice Chenin blanc or White Burgundy and enjoy on the beach!
The limit for scallops diving recreationally is 10 per person per day. This was a good day for us.