Here are some quick and informative tips on how to select the Freshest Scallops in the bunch.
Scallops are almost always sold shucked, so what you are looking for are “dry packed” scallops, meaning they are not shipped and stored in brine. Those scallops you see wallowing in milky ick? Leave them be. Better to buy frozen, vacuum-sealed scallops, which are perfectly good by the way, than an inferior wet-packed scallop.
This one is easy. Buy them whole and frozen. Whole because the shell protects them from the rigors of being frozen without losing too much moisture, and frozen because shrimp cook – and rot – very rapidly.
Should you be near a shrimping region, or have access to truly magnificent fresh shrimp, by all means buy them. Head on if possible. Why? Because head-on shrimp stay moister. Remember: Nothing says boring like a dry, overcooked shrimp.