Bay Scallops and Tomatoes with Pasta


Bay Scalloping On Nantucket

According to Clint Andrews in his definitive book, Fishing Around Nantucket, the market for the eyes, or adducter muscles, of scallops developed in the late nineteenth century. Until that time, bay scallops were used more as bait to catch other fish. Can you imagine? Nantucket's precious crop was regularly shipped to New York City specifically to supply the legendary Delmonico's restaurant.

The beautiful catboats that tacked back and forth in the harbor pulling their dredges must have been a magnificent spectacle. Now, assorted boats with outboard and inboard motors work off Coatue's shores and bring their valuable catch dockside. And, just as their predecessors did, the fishermen take the scallops to a shanty to be shucked, then to a local buyer who sends them off-island to city markets around the country.


Bay Scallops
and Tomatoes with Pasta

Serves 4 to 6


During the 1980 Nantucket Seafest, my cooking demonstration was billed as Italian, so I decided to use this recipe to showcase the Island's world-renowned scallops.

2 pounds plum tomatoes, peeled and chopped, or
   1 can (32 ounces) peeled tomatoes
1 yellow onion, finely chopped
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 pound pasta shells
2 cloves garlic
1/2 cup firmly packed fresh flat-leaf parsley
1-1/2 pounds bay scallops
3 tablespoons heavy cream
Grated Parmesan cheese for garnish

1. In a large saucepan or a stockpot, boil water for the pasta. Slowly cook the tomatoes in a nonreactive saucepan over medium heat until reduced by one-third, about 20 minutes. Add the onion and red pepper flakes, and continue to cook. Plunge the pasta into the boiling water and cook.

2. Chop the garlic cloves and parsley together until they form a loose paste. Add the scallops to the sauce and cook until opaque, about 2 minutes. Salt to taste.

3. Drain the pasta. Put half of it in a warm serving dish. Pour the sauce over the top. Add the cream and the remaining pasta.Top with the garlic-parsley paste and toss all the ingredients togcther. Serve in warm bowls with the grated cheese.


Recipe from: The Nantucket Table
By Susan Simon
Photographs by Tom Eckerle
Chronicle Books
ISBN: 0-81 18-1472-6, 1998, $29.95 hardcover
168 pages, illustrated with color photographs throughout
Recipes & photos reprinted by permission


The Nantucket Table


Copyright © 1998—the electronic Gourmet Guide, Inc. All rights reserved.