Venetian-style scallops

A quick but impressive starter of plump scallops scattered with toasted breadcrumbs

  • Cook:35 mins
  • More effort

Nutrition per serving

  • kcal 290
  • fat 18g
  • saturates 3g
  • carbs 14g
  • sugars 0g
  • fibre 0g
  • protein 19g
  • salt 0.6g


  • 12 large fresh scallops, separated from their shells (ask your fishmonger to do this for you)
  • 4 concave scallops shells, as serving dishes
  • 3 slices day-old white bread
  • 6 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • large handful fresh finely chopped flatleaf parsley
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • juice of a lemon, plus wedges to serve


  1. Rinse the scallops in cold water then pat dry with kitchen paper. With scissors, snip off the corals (the orange part) as closely as you can to the plump white scallop, and reserve. Scrub the scallop shells thoroughly and dry them.

  2. Remove the crusts from the bread and discard. Break the bread into smallish pieces, then pulse in the food processor to make into fine breadcrumbs. Tip into a large non-stick frying pan and toast the breadcrumbs over a moderate heat, stirring every now and then. When they are evenly browned, set aside.

  3. Brush any crumbs from the pan with kitchen paper then add the olive oil. When hot, add the scallops but not the corals. Fry over a moderate heat for 3 minutes on each side, then add the corals, chopped parsley and garlic and fry a further minute. If you have shelled your own scallops and saved some of their sweet juice, strain it through muslin to remove any sand then add it to the pan now and let it bubble over a high heat. Season to taste with salt and pepper, add the lemon juice and mix well.

  4. Spoon three scallops and their corals with some of the pan juices onto each of the cleaned shells, then scatter with the dry toasted breadcrumbs. Serve with the lemon wedges.

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