On Nantucket, bay scallops have been a culinary staple as far back as anyone can remember, and for many islanders, including Bea Conner, the scalloper's wife who gave us this recipe, they are the ultimate convenience food. This dish is delicious proof. For a richer sauce, Conner advised us to add 2–3 tbsp. heavy cream to each dish along with the wine.
2 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
4 tbsp. butter
4 dozen bay scallops
4 tbsp. dry white wine
16 Ritz crackers
4 tbsp. freshly grated parmigiano-reggiano
1. Set oven rack in upper third of oven; then preheat oven to 400°. Divide garlic among four small gratin dishes, add 1 tbsp. butter to each, and place in oven until butter melts.
2. Remove dishes from oven and add 1 dozen bay scallops and 1 tbsp. wine to each dish; spoon sauce over scallops until evenly coated.
3. Crumble 4 crackers over scallops in each dish; then sprinkle each with 1 tbsp. freshly grated parmigiano-reggiano. Bake scallops until they are hot and have turned opaque, about 10 minutes. Switch oven to broil, and cook until cracker crumbs and cheese are lightly browned on top.