This past Saturday, I decided to go diving for some scallops, as folks were coming over to drink and play rockband. Originally, I set my alarms for 6:00 AM but completely slept through them and woke up a little past 8:30. I got up and headed out towards Laguna Beach. The sky was cloudy, but by the time I reached the beach, it had cleared up and was shaping up to be a very nice day. I got to the treasure island dive spot and geared up. I brought the camera along in the case I see something interesting, I wasn’t out for photography, but to get scallops, so the photography will be limited.
Upon dropping below the surface, I saw a thornback ray that fluttered away while I tried to snap a picture. The visibility was about 10-15 feet and it was fairly surgy. Swimming out and around the first reef, I saw a large bat ray just sitting in the sand. I quickly got my camera ready and slowly inched closer. It didn’t move until I got pretty close so I took a picture from the front and from the back as it started to gracefully fly away 25 feet under water as an eagle would in the air. Other than the bat ray, the only other interesting thing I saw was caves full of lobsters – 3 more weeks my spiny little friends, three more weeks… On to scallop hunting.
The dive lasted a total of 59 minutes on a steel 100 filled to 3400 psi. The temperature was amazing, about 70 degrees at depth. It was a very relaxing dive and I was able to find 7 nicely sized scallops to bring home. I put them into a bucket of ocean water and they saw until about dinner time when I set off to prepare them.
First, one part of the shell is removed. One of the two shells is usually flatter and works well as a make shift platter, so when removing one of the shell sides, I remove the more concave end. The internal organs save the adductor muscle is removed, and they are now ready for some sort of a garnish or topping before being cooked. Of course, they can be eaten raw as well; but these have been sitting in the house for a few hours, raw scallops are best eaten right on the shore.
I chopped up some garlic, cilantro, and sauteed this with some butter for a while. Once the garlic starts to caramelize slightly, bread crumbs are mixed in to finish the topping.
The scallops are topped off and are ready for the grill.
The grill is nice and hot and the scallops are placed onto the grill. The grill cover is closed and the scallops are allowed to cook for 3-5 minutes. Over cooking the scallops will give them a very rubbery texture and would ruin fresh scallops.
After about 4 minutes or so, they are pulled from the grill and ready to eat. Damn tasty little sea critters!