If you're a seafood lover like me, fried calamari is one of your favorite appetizers. I always order it at restaurants, and as I bite into each awesome morsel I wonder how hard it would be to make them at home.
Turns out, it's pretty freaking easy. I found a package of frozen calamari at Wegmans and sliced them up, fried them, and served them with some homemade garlic aoili (also surprisingly simple to make!)
You will need:
- vegetable oil
- squid tentacles
- 2 cups flour
- dried parsley (or other herbs)
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 1/2 tbs lemon juice
Heat oil in large deep pan (oil should be about 3-4 inches deep) over medium heat. Oil should be heated to 350.
Slice tentacles into 3/4-1 inch rings, and toss in the mixture of flour, salt, pepper, and parsley. Carefully, and a few at a time, drop the rings into the oil and fry until golden brown. This will take anywhere from 1-3 minutes, perhaps longer if your oil isn't hot enough. Using tongs or a slotted spoon, scoop out the calamari and dump them onto a paper towel-lined plate, to soak up extra oil.
For the garlic aoili, it's another recipe about taste. I don't presume to know what you like as far as food goes, so the measurements are just approximations. Change it around until you get a dipping sauce that has the right flavors for you. I personally like mine very garlic-y with a lot of lemon tang!
Alternatively you could serve the calamari with marinara sauce, but I love garlic aoili, and jump at the opportunity to make it whenever I can.
So make this for your friends, because they'll think you're a wizard or something. And even seafood-shy people tend to like these, because of the mild taste. Yes, they're a little chewy, but you don't feel like you're eating fish.
Because, technically, you're not. You're eating a cephalopod...
I'll show myself out.
Do you have a favorite dish that you use to wow guests?