Bay Scallops in Mignonnette Sauce

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Jacques Pépin: More Fast Food My Way
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Try to get bay scallops for this dish, but if they are unavailable you can substitute sea scallops, cut into 4 to 6 pieces. My market usually has small Nantucket bay scallops, each about the size of a large cherry. They are very sweet, tender, and delicious raw. I marinate them for a couple of hours in a mignonnette sauce, traditionally made of shallots, coarse black pepper, and vinegar, to which I add mustard and olive oil. Pieces of crunchy, spicy radish add texture and taste. I serve this dish as a refreshing appetizer in scallop or oyster shells with a fine julienne of cucumber on top. —Jacques Pépin

4 first-course servings

  • 1/2 pound bay scallops (about 20), rinsed under cold water to remove any sand
  • 2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons chopped shallots
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
  • 1 small cucumber
  • 1/3 cup diced (1/4-inch) radishes

Remove any adductor muscles still attached to the scallops.

Combine the vinegar, mustard, oil, shallot, salt, and pepper in a bowl large enough to hold the scallops. One to 2 hours before serving time, combine the scallops with the sauce ingredients in the bowl and refrigerate.


Peel the cucumber and cut 6 to 8 long strips of flesh from it with a vegetable peeler. Pile the strips together and cut them into a fine julienne or thin, spaghetti-like strips.

At serving time, add the radish to the scallops and mix well. Divide the scallops among four scallop shells, oyster shells, or small plates and sprinkle the julienned cucumber on top. Serve.