Ingredient of the week: squid

After several days on the Spanish coast, our Byte to Savour food blogger can’t keep shtum about squid. This versatile cephalopod is best eaten, where possible, with your feet in the sand and the sound of the ocean crashing against the shore nearby.

It must be jumping fresh – frozen it can become rubbery when cooked. It requires the briefest of cooking times too unless you want to be chewing a rubber band. In Spain you’ll frequently see it on paella along with a variety of shellfish including prawns and mussels (although many would argue the true paella is the rabbit version from Valencia – an argument for another day), but it is at its tentacled best when grilled or cut into rings, floured and deep fried. In both cases a squeeze of lemon is all that is needed.

The Thais use it well too, poaching in a hot stock flavoured with lemongrass, lime leaves, chillies, lime juice, fish sauce, sugar and given a final showering of coriander – which takes only a few seconds to cook – no more than a minute. Served with sticky rice this makes a squeakingly savoury supper.

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