What does a girl on a New England island do when there’s a nor’easter coming? Two things. First, she goes scalloping of course! Saturday was the opening day for scalloping in the Lagoon. The Lagoon is one of the better places for scallops on the island and it’s a big day on opening day. No nor’easter was going to stop me. Well the low tide was around 7:30 and the wind wasn’t going to pick up until 10am or so. So there was plenty of time! And I wasn’t the only crazy person. Sunrise was at 7:10, I showed up at 7:05 and there were already people there. There were about 10 cars parked up the street and about 20 people in the water. My grandmother in-law joined me about 20 minutes later. She is an amazing woman and islander and has taught me so much. She was the one that taught me how to shellfish.
The scallops were big and plentiful. The water was calm and there was a light breeze. It only took us an hour or so to get our limits of one full bushel each. By then the wind was starting to kick up just a bit. We set up and shucked in Granma’s back yard while the wind got gustier and the skies became more imposing. The first rain drops began to fall as we were shucking the last ones. (I’ve talked about the act of scalloping and shucking here and didn’t want to become repetitive. Please visit for more info if you are inclined) When all was said and done I had this:
That is 6 1/2 lbs of bay scallops! A good morning’s work. And at $20/lb at the fish market, a luxury that I couldn’t afford otherwise. So you may ask “what do you do with all those scallops?” I took out enough for dinner and then froze the rest for later. To freeze them I measure them out in 1 cup amounts and if there is not enough juice, add a bit of salt water (regular water is fine, but as an old salt once told me seaweed and saltwater add “flava”). If there is a lot of air between them they can dry out in the bag. I’ve done it in different amounts, but one cup seems to be perfect. Not too many or too few.
For dinner, I made my favorite scallops wrapped in bacon over rice and I have pictures this time. They are super easy. You take half piece of bacon, wrap it around the scallop, and line them up in a pan seam down. You bake them in the oven at 450 and then turn the oven to broil to crisp up the bacon. The bacon I used today is local from Blackwater Farm in West Tisbury. One day I will take you there to meet the animals.
The second thing I do when there is a nor’easter coming is make kale soup. That will be tomorrow's post.