Scallops are the family Pectinidae of bivalve molluscs.
Like the true oysters (family Ostreidae), scallops have a central adductor muscle, which means that the shell has a characteristic central scar, marking its point of attachment. Scallops have a smaller adductor muscle than oysters. Their shell shape tends to be highly regular, and corresponds to the standard image of a shell.
Scallops are a popular type of shellfish in both Eastern and Western cooking. They are characterised by having two types of meat in one shell: the scallop (white, meaty) and its coral (orange, soft) which is its roe. Dried scallop is known in Oriental cuisine as conpoy.
The French for a scallop is coquille St. Jacques, which means "cockle (or mollusk) of St. James", and that term also refers to a method of cooking and serving them, on a shell (real or ceramic) in a creamy wine sauce.
The French name derives from the fact that the scallop shell is the traditional emblem of Saint James the Great, and medieval pilgrims to his shrine at Santiago de Compostela often wore a scallop shell symbol on their hats or clothes. The scallop shell symbol found its way into heraldry as a badge of those who had been on the pilgrimage to Compostela. Among those whose family coat of arms included the scallop was John Wesley, and as a result the scallop shell is used as an emblem of Methodism.
Scalloped edges or ridges refers to a wavy pattern reminiscent of the edge of a scallop's shell.