Scallop seashells are marine bivalve mollusks which are similar to oysters and clams. The difference is scallop can swim by opening and closing their shells. By snapping their shells together, they propel themselves rapidly in a zigzag direction. Most are tropical, but a few live in polar waters. Scallops are fished commercially for the large single muscle which is excellent eating.
They are often used in main dishes, appetizers, salads, and soup. The meat is sweet and delicate. The seashell itself is often used as a baking dish and/or serving dish for seafood recipes.
Scallops are popular both as collector's items and as food. You can recognize them by their fan shape which can also be seen on the logo of Shell Oil gas stations. Throughout the centuries scallop shells are used in decoration of buildings, ceremonial dances and symbols.