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Is there any value to dehydrated scallops?

  • c

You know, the big fat brown ones in the big jars in asian markets.

I'm scared. Should I be?

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  1. I have used dried scallops that came in a plastic bag in "chinese style" paella.

    3 Replies
    1. re: Alan

      Aren't they a key ingredient in XO sauce?

      1. re: PayOrPlay

        Yep. Also great sauteed with tofu (after reconstituting) and in soups.

        1. re: Gary Soup

          Shred dry and stir fry with snow pea greens.

    2. Caviar: The Dried Scallops, either whole or in pieces are most often used in Hong Kong, as a signature, or to make their Rice Gruel, Chuck or Congeem stand out with better flavor or character. In the intensely competetive market. The type of Restaurants featuring this dish, also serve Mein [Noodles], Won Tons, Sui Kow, Steamed Vegetables with Oyster Sauce and Steamed Liver, or Kidneys. They also serve a traditional Fried Bread, and stay open for Breakfast until Late Night for Snacks.

      1. Umm... if you check the price tags you should find that there must be a pretty big value (whatever it is...) :).

        1. Dried scallops have more intense flavour. The texture also changes, to a certain chewiness that can be very good when cooked right. Beside direct consumption, they are often used to flavour stocks, especially rich stocks that are used in soups or for braising. These dried scallops come in different grades and prices depending on how intact they are and how intense the flavour they impart.

          1. heck no! They are delicious, and so different than fresh scallops. You have to soak them in water until soft, then you steam them in some stock, than you can use them for for soups or stir fries. The flavor is very intense, savory and has that seafood sweetness.
            The bigger the scallops the more expensive.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Wendy Lai

              It's time for me to try dried scallops after reading about how delicious they are.

            2. They're wonderful when cooked well, however, they are a totally different ingredient than fresh scallops (so you can't rehydrate them and use them in a fresh scallop recipe).

              1. Be not afraid! Dried scallops are an important ingredient in foo jook, a very good funky soup with dried tofu "noodles", ginko nuts, etc. As a child I also remember chewing on small pieces. Sort of a seafood jerky.

                1. No. They are a wonderful product. Makes a fantastic Chinese-style white (that is, no soy sauce) fried rice with some shredded rehydrated fried scallops and minced Chinese sausage and scallions....

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: Karl S

                    What's the best way to rehydrate them? Would a clam juice soak make it better or worse?

                    1. re: EWSflash

                      I would just use some water. I wouldn't add any flavor to dilute their flavor. You don't need to rehydrate them fully - just enough for them to be shreddable like canned tuna.

                      1. re: Karl S

                        Karl S is right.

                        Warm water works best.

                        They have such concentrated flavor that any other type of liquid (e.g. clam juice) would either adulterate or confuse the flavors.

                  2. I have seen them, never bought them, but my dim sum place has rice flour dumplings with scallops in them that are always a must-have for me. They have to be using the dried scallops, fresh or frozen would be too pricey and hard to maintain a consistent fresh supply. No idea how they reconstitute them, but I'me here to say it can be done deliciously. Thyat unique scallop flavor comes shining through.

                    5 Replies
                    1. re: EWSflash

                      Frozen scallops are not expensive for restaurants. The dried scallops are very expensive. They are used more like a spice or flavoring.

                      1. re: JMF

                        I agree....depending on the source and perceived quality, the prices on dried scallops, oysters and abalone can be astronomical.

                        1. re: fourunder

                          Thanks for the clarification. I just thought dried would be cheaper due to being less hassle to store.

                          1. re: EWSflash

                            I've seen dried scallops (or conpoy) go for as high as $10/ounce.

                            1. re: ipsedixit

                              It's been some time since I have noticed the price of dried scallops, but in light of this thread, the first memory that popped into my head was the large glass jars in Kam Man on Canal Street, NYC.....the price I seemed to recall was $120/lb, but that was probably 10 years ago.

                    2. If I had not been exposed to dried abalone, I would question dehydrated scallops too. But I have, so I don't.