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All questions

A question about a recipe: Thai-Style Scallops

F5f37f5a dde9 4193 8469 25f6d36ff70f  scallopscloseup

Any thoughts on the use of frozen scallops as opposed to fresh. I've had horrible luck with grit in my sole source for fresh scallops. Frozen seem less problematic, but I've never compared the taste or more importantly the texture between fresh and frozen.

asked by thurston almost 5 years ago
7 answers 3531 views
Ab57b4b7 946e 4ad2 8dc8 7ec7b6ffd9d1  winnie100
added almost 5 years ago

Frozen is fine. I believe that what I actually used when I made the recipe originally :)

23b88974 7a89 4ef5 a567 d442bb75da04  avatar
added almost 5 years ago

I think frozen seafood are often more fresh because they are frozen immediately after they are caught/harvested. The "fresh" seafood you get at markets may actually be defrosted or may reflect some lag time between when the seafood was caught and when it was shipped to the market.

1f596ae9 f36c 4022 8b52 0c8583fd70b0  meg b f52
added almost 5 years ago

The only issue I have with frozen scallops is that many of them are treated with a chemical called STP - these are labeled as wet-pack scallops. The fresh, dry pack scallops that I purchase at Whole Foods have much less moisture and they sear a lot easier. With the frozen scallops, just be careful to make sure and defrost properly and dry them really well before cooking.

E0cc9d5c 6544 49fb b0e4 5c150d9ac0f7  imag0055
added almost 5 years ago

I regularly freeze fresh Maine scallops when I can get them. However, grit in fresh scallops is an unusual problem. Where are those fresh scallops coming from? I would only ever buy the kind that are called "dry"---that is, without that chemical/water bath that plumps them up. Sometimes true bay scallops are available, usually from Massachusetts, but I've also seen the so-called calico scallops that are sometimes unscrupulously passed off as bay scallops. I have also heard of fake deep sea scallops made by stamping them out of shark meat. Scallops are quite perishable, so a frozen product from a reliable source might actually be better than a poor fresh product.

23b88974 7a89 4ef5 a567 d442bb75da04  avatar
added almost 5 years ago

the scallops i'm getting most likely from from the pacific. i live outside of los angeles, and have a decent fish market in town, but i believe the fresh scallops are harvested by a "dredging" technique, that, as i've read, can drive silt into the scallop. apparently, no amount of soaking or cleaning can remove the grit from the tissue.

E0cc9d5c 6544 49fb b0e4 5c150d9ac0f7  imag0055
added almost 5 years ago

Ugh. In addition to grit in the scallops, dredging is terrible for the sea bed. Diver-harvested scallops are worth the extra money, even if it means eating them less often.

21cce3cd 8e22 4227 97f9 2962d7d83240  photo squirrel
added almost 5 years ago

thurston, your seafood market concurs that rinsing will not remove the grit? Here in Boston I always rinse my scallops because grit is usually present in some amount.
Personally, while i have frozen scallops, fresh are much better in texture and in retaining their natural juices . As mentioned above, it's harder to get a good sear on previously frozen scallops because they exude so much juice when cooked.