Classic French Coquilles Saint-Jacques Recipe

Coquilles St. Jacques
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  • 50 mins
  • Prep: 20 mins,
  • Cook: 30 mins
  • Yield: 4 servings
Ratings (20)

Coquilles St Jacques is one of the classics of the French kitchen, simple to make and so delicious to eat. You can choose which size of scallop you use, the King size are large meaty offerings or the small Queenies which are little nuggets of sweet scallop. 

This Coquilles Saint-Jacques recipe is traditionally served on little scallop shells, but ovenproof ramekins are a great substitution. The recipe features both scallops and mushrooms, sautéed in butter with seasonings, and then made even richer with a Gruyere and a breadcrumb topping.

Coquilles Saint-Jacques is most often eaten as a first course, or appetizer, but can be used as a delicious seafood entrée.

What You'll Need

  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 1/2 pounds sea scallops
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 8 ounces fresh mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 2/3 cup dry white wine
  • 2 tablespoons Cognac
  • 3 tablespoons bread crumbs
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1/3 cup grated Gruyere cheese
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

How to Make It

  1. Mix the flour, salt, curry powder, and cayenne pepper together in a large bowl. Add the scallops to the bowl and toss the mixture together until you thoroughly coat the scallops in the spiced flour mixture.
  2. Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the scallops to the butter and sauté them, turning once, until they are golden brown on both sides, about 4 minutes; transfer the scallops to a plate and cover to keep warm.
  1. Add the mushrooms and onions to the skillet and sauté, frequently stirring, over medium-high heat for 4 minutes, until they start to turn light brown. Add the white wine to the pan and scrape the bottom of the pan with a metal spatula to get all the brown bits off the pan and into the sauce. Reduce the heat slightly and simmer until the sauce has reduced by half. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the Cognac and scallops.
  2. Preheat the oven broiler. Divide the scallop and sauce mixture between 6 scallop shells or small ovenproof serving dishes.
  3. Mix the bread crumbs, melted butter, and Gruyere cheese; divide and spoon the mixture evenly over each dish of scallops. Place the dishes about 5-6 inches from the broiler and cook until the scallop mixture is hot, bubbly, and browned on top. Sprinkle with lemon juice and serve immediately.
  4. Serve the Coquilles as a first course but it also works very well for a light lunch with a light green salad on the side.