To cook baby squid, aim for one of two extremes: very fast or very slow cooking. Cooking for slightly too long or not long enough leads to chewy, slightly tough squid. In particular, baby squid grills well in just a few minutes. Baby squid also suits stuffing with a spicy or strong-tasting filling. Baby squid requires less preparation than larger squid, though still involves some cleaning and gutting. Some stores sell pre-prepared squid, which makes for less mess when cooking.
Chargrilled Baby Squid
Pull the insides out of the baby squid. Remove the flexible, translucent piece of cartilage from the squid's center. Take out any jelly-like substances. Keep the head and tentacles. Rinse your squid.
Slice each piece of squid lengthwise. Score light lines into the flesh with a sharp knife in a criss-cross pattern. Set aside.
Mix 1/4-cup of olive oil with 1 tsp. of paprika, a pinch of salt and two cloves of finely chopped garlic. Brush the whole baby squid with the marinade.
Turn your burner to a medium flame and heat up a metal griddle pan. Lightly brush with olive oil. When hot, place each piece of baby squid on the pan. Put the heads and tentacles on the pan as well as the squid bodies.
Cook for two minutes on each side of the baby squid. The flesh should be opaque, according to the book "Fish & Shellfish, Grilled & Smoked."
Stuffed Baby Squid
Put 7 oz. of cubed chorizo sausage in a bowl. Add 7 oz. of cubed feta cheese. Mix together well.
Clean and prepare 20 baby squid. Remove the tentacles and take out the innards — but leave the tube of the body intact, Richard Corrigan instructs on the BBC website.
Spoon the feta and chorizo mix into the 20 baby squid until three-quarters full. Push a small cocktail stick through the two open sides of each squid to seal the opening.
Heat your oven to 360 degrees Fahrenheit. Pour a little oil onto a heavy skillet and heat on the burner. Place each stuffed baby squid into the pan and sear for a minute on each side. Move to an oven-proof dish when ready.
Cook the squid in the oven for two minutes. Fry the baby squid tentacles on the skillet for two minutes at the same time. Serve both immediately.
Things You Will Need
- Baby squid
- Sharp knife
- Olive oil
- Griddle pan or skillet
- Cubed chorizo
- Cubed feta cheese
- Cocktail sticks
Buy squid as fresh as possible. Look for white, firm flesh and no hard or dark patches.
Try different squid stuffing mixes — such as minced pork or minced prawns with ginger and garlic.
Ensure that frozen squid is completely defrosted before use.