Grilled calamari or squid is a great alternative to fried calamari and is ideal for the summer months. My favorite way to prepare fresh squid is to marinate a few pounds of the well cleaned fish in lemon juice, parsley, et. al. and then quickly cook on an outdoor grill (the smokey flavor derived from a wood burning fire compliments the neutral taste of squid).
- Fresh lemon juice
- 1 clove of garlic, finely minced
- 1 1/2 pounds cleaned squid (about 3 pounds whole) tentacles separated from the bodies, rinsed and patted dry
- 1/4 cup of extra-virgin olive oil
- Freshly ground black pepper and Kosher salt to taste
- Zest of 1/2 lemon
- Bunch of parsley, finely chopped
Clean the whole squid well, rinse, and pat try. If you’ve never cleaned whole squid before I recommend you watch this excellent how to clean squid video. You can also purchase cleaned squid “tubes” from a reputable fish shop or market (but you won’t get the tasty tentacles, et. al.). In a bowl, combine 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, lemon juice and zest, chopped parsley, garlic, Kosher salt, and freshly ground black pepper (save about a 1/4 of the mixture for dressing later on). Add the squid tubes (and tentacles) and mix well. Cover the bowl containing the fish and marinade and refrigerate for 2-3 hours.
Next, on a hot outdoor grill, place the squid on your oiled BBQ surface and cook for about 1.5 minutes on each side (for a total of 3-4 minutes depending on the strength of the fire; it’s imperative the squid is not overcooked given that it will quickly turn tough and chewy). Move the cooked squid to a cutting board and cut into rings. Toss the rings with the remaining marinade and serve with a tomato salad, olives, sauteed dandelion greens, and good bread.
If you’re interested in a pasta recipe featuring squid or calamari click here.