top of page

Sustainable Seafood: Scallop Bouillabaisse Recipe

Monterey Bay Aquarium's cookbook Cooking for Solutions is chalk-full of recipes that promotes a sustainable environment. Julie Packard, Executive Director of Monterey Bay Aquarium, says

"Each of us has a part to play in creating a future with healthy oceans. One of the easiest ways to make a difference involves the choices we make each day about the foods we eat. "

Multiple celebrity chefs showcase their dishes in this cookbook, including Nico Romo, the youngest chef ever to be awarded the title of Master Chef of France. Romo's recipe of Scallop Bouillabaisse is one of the many recipes in the book that works with Seafood Watch® to promote sustainable cuisine. (For correct pronunciation, "bouillabaisse" is said as "boo/yah/behss.") Seafood Watch® works to recommend seafood choices that are fished or farmed in ways that have the least amount of impact on our environment.

For this recipe, Seafood Watch® *currently recommends farm-raised scallops from all sources and wild-caught weathervane scallops from Alaska. Check here to see if there have been updates to this recommendation since posting.

Scallop Bouillabaisse (serves 4)


For the broth

  • 1 14 oz. can coconut milk

  • 1 celery stalk, chopped

  • 1/2 onion, diced

  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh ginger

  • 1/4 cup chopped garlic

  • 1/2 cup dry white wine

  • 2 tsp. salt

  • 1 kaffir lime leaf

  • Juice of 1 lime

  • 1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

  • 1/2 stalk lemongrass, chopped

  • A few fish bones

For the spicy rouille

  • 1 egg yolk

  • 2 cloves garlic

  • 1 cup olive oil

  • 10 pistils saffron

  • Pinch of salt

  • Pinch of cayenne pepper

  • 1 tsp. Sriracha sauce

For the scallops

  • 1 and 1/2 lbs. bay or sea scallops

  • 1/4 cup olive oil

For the vegetables

  • 1 cup udon noodles, pre-blanched

  • 1 baby bok choy, chopped

  • 1 head oyster mushrooms

  • 1/2 head fennel finely chopped

To finish

  • Several cloves garlic, crushed

  • Freshly ground black pepper

  • 1/2 lb. butter

  • Juice of 1 lemon

  • Juice of 1 lime

  • French bread baguette sliced


For the broth

Combine all broth ingredients together in a large pot and simmer over low-medium heat for 25 minutes. Skim broth and pass through chinois to produce a smooth, velvety texture.

For the spicy rouille

Whisk together egg yolk and ground garlic, then add olive oil, saffron, salt, cayenne pepper and Sriracha. Cover and refrigerate to set.

For the scallops

Heat olive oil in a 6-quart saucepan over medium-high heat. Sear scallops for 2 to 3 minutes, depending on size, until scallops are browned, then remove from pan.

For the vegetables

In the same pan, add finished broth and bring to a boil. Add all the vegetables and udon noodles to pan and sauté together until vegetables are semi-cooked, yet still crunchy, about 5 minutes.

To finish and serve

Remove pan from heat, then add crushed garlic, more or less to taste, freshly ground pepper, butter, and lemon and lime juice. Gently incorporate scallops and simmer until noodles are soft and scallops are cooked through.

Place a thick slice of crusty French bread, fresh or slightly toasted, into a soup bowl and top with a generous spoonful of rouille. Ladle the vegetable, scallop and fragrant bouillabaisse broth mixture over the bread and serve. Enjoy!


Resources and References

  • Ozug, Joanne. “Seared Scallops Photo.” Fifteen Spatulas, 5 Jan. 2019,

  • “Seafood Search.” Fishing and Farming Methods from the Seafood Watch Program at the Monterey Bay Aquarium,

  • Savor Sustainability: Recipes, Chefs & Seafood Champions from Cooking for Solutions 2011. Monterey Bay Aquarium, 2011.


bottom of page