Copyright Thomas Saaristo  All Rights Reserved
Calamari 2 ways
Buttermilk fried

Marinating the squid in buttermilk defeats the rubber band effect some fried calamari
tends to have. It also helps create a light, crisp batter and more flavorful calamari, so
the only garnish needed is a squeeze of lemon

If you purchase whole, uncleaned calamari, 1 pound yields about a 1/2 pound of
cleaned calamari

The key to crispy calamari is frying only a handful at a time. Crowding the pan makes
for clumpy batter and a greasy result

Chickpea flour can be found at Middle Eastern markets, or in the international or
health food or gluten free section of your supermarket

1 1/2 pounds cleaned calamari, bodies cut into 1/2 inch rings and tentacles left whole
2 cups buttermilk
3 cups chick pea flour
2 tablespoons House salt
Canola oil, for frying
1 lemon, cut into 8 wedges

Place calamari in a medium nonreactive bowl, cover with buttermilk, and marinate in
the refrigerator for 1 hour.

Place oven rack in center position and heat oven to 200 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a
baking sheet with a few layers of paper towels

Whisk together the chickpea flour and salt to aerate and break up any lumps; set aside.

Pour 2 inches of the canola oil into a Dutch oven or a large, heavy bottomed pot. Heat
over high heat until the oil reaches 400 degrees Fahrenheit on a deep frying/candy

Remove a handful of the calamari from the buttermilk, place it in the flour mixture,
and toss to coat evenly. Transfer calamari to a fine mesh strainer and gently shake any
excess flour back into the bowl. Carefully place the calamari in the oil and fry until light
golden brown, about 1 minute. Transfer to the prepared baking sheet using a slotted
spoon, and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Place the baking sheet
in the oven to keep warm.

Return the oil to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and repeat the process with the remaining
calamari (5 to 6 batches in all with 1 1/2 pounds calamari

Serve Fried calamari hot with lemon wedges

Grilled with vinaigrette

This recipe is inspired by the marinated octopus at my favorite Greek restaurant but is
more approachable for the home cook and guests


For the squid
1 1/2 pounds cleaned calamari, bodies cut into 1/2 inch rings and tentacles left whole
2 tablespoons canola oil
Pinch of house salt

For the vinaigrette
1 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
3 large garlic cloves, minced
1/2 teaspoon House salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon dried oregano

Heat a barbecue grill until hot or a grill pan over medium high heat until hot

Toss the cleaned calamari with the oil and salt and marinate while you prepare the

Add the ingredients for the vinaigrette to a jar with a screw top lid. Replace the lid and
shake vigorously until thoroughly emulsified. Set aside

Grill the calamari in a single layer over the hottest section of the grill or grill pan to
ensure it gets slightly charred before it gets rubbery. The squid should take less than
60 seconds on a hot grill

Pour the vinaigrette into a shallow wide bowl, add the grilled calamari while still hot,
toss to gloss and leave it at room temperature for 20 minutes

Garnish Grilled calamari with fresh parsley or celery leaves and serve at room