Thursday, March 4, 2010

Calamari "Noodles" w/ Arugula & Olives


Whenever we go out, we order fried calamari or grilled calamari and I dream of Linda's stuffed calamari.

Calamari is squid in Italian. My husband calls it bait.

I have never made it at home, except for buying it in frozen rings for a cold seafood salad.

My friend Sarah kept raving about Anne Burrell's arugula salad w/ calamari "noodles" and I was intrigued.

Burrell cuts the squid tubes into skinny linguine type strings and calls them noodles. Hmmm, interesting.

My fish monger only has fresh squid during the holidays, so I had to buy it frozen, but that was fine.
I defrosted the tubes of ugliness and saved the scary tentacles for tomorrow's lunch (I love the tentacles, but you knew I was weird).

The grilled bread rubbed with garlic was a great accompaniment to this light first course.

Calamari Noodles with Arugula & Olives: (original recipe from Anne Burrell)

3/4 pound clean calamari, tubes and tentacles (or only tubes, if you prefer)
Extra-virgin olive oil
3 to 4 cloves garlic, smashed, plus 1 for rubbing bread
Pinch crushed red pepper flakes
1 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup kalamata or gaeta olives, slivered
4 slices rustic Italian bread
2 cups washed baby arugula
2 tablespoons chopped chives, for garnish (I skipped the chives)

Cut each calamari tube in strips lengthwise that are about 1/4-inch wide. If using the tentacles, cut in segments.

Coat a large saute pan generously with olive oil. Add the smashed garlic cloves and crushed red pepper and bring to a high heat. When the garlic is golden brown and very aromatic remove the garlic and discard.

Carefully add the calamari and quickly toss in the hot oil. Season with salt and pepper and saute for 1 to 2 minutes or until the calamari turn from translucent to opaque.

Add the wine and the olives and cook until the wine has reduced by about half (this took about another 5 minutes). Taste to see if the seasoning is correct. I added a bit more salt and hot pepper.

While the calamari is cooking, toast or grill the bread. Rub the bread with the remaining garlic clove and drizzle generously with olive oil.

Divide the arugula between 4 serving bowls. Spoon the calamari and juices over the greens. Cut each piece of bread in half on the bias and arrange on the calamari.

I garnished with lemon slices.


SarahB said...

Stuffed calamari is next on our list too! Al is dying to make it. You made a big batch of this!

Ciao Chow Linda said...

Welcome to the world of calamari. The salad looks refreshing and so healthy! Thanks for the shout-out. I promise to invite you for stuffed calamari sometime soon.

kat said...

The tentacles are my favorite part too!

Anonymous said...

Stacey, you've got lust for life, BRAVO!

doggybloggy said...

this seems really cool - was the calamari tender?

The Japanese Redneck said...

That's what I wanted to know too - are they tender or chewy?

Laurie said...

I keep telling myself I've got to make calamari or squid soup but I never get around to it. Seeing this post has me desiring to make it soon! :)
Lovely recipe and I love it pared with the arugula!

Anonymous said...

Looks really yummy. I wondered the same thing about the texture of the calamari. After you cooked the calamari until opaque, you then cook another 5 mins. I was told you have to cook it very quickly or it will get chewy. How did it turn out for you?

Stacey Snacks said...

I was worried about the texture of the calamari being rubbery, but it was nice and tender, because you only cook it a few minutes.

I think it also depends on the squid you buy. I lucked out with the frozen package. It was $13.99 for a large package. Enough for 6 people.

lisa said...

I saw Anne making this and wanted to try it. Looks fantastic!

The Food Hunter said...

Doesn't matter what form it's in I love calamari. This looks great.

citronetvanille said...

That is my kind of dish, I can eat calamari every day...Love the salad

Lori Lynn said...

One of the most clever recipes I have seen in a while!
Looks excellent!