This is a dish that’s on every pub and club menu… sadly what’s served often resembles greasy, deep-fried rubber bands! Wiping the membrane out of the inside of the squid tubes is the key to tender, rather than chewy, squid. The other important tip is to let the oil temperature recover between batches, or the coating will absorb too much oil and be soggy rather than crisp.
1kg small Loligo Squid, cleaned
1 cup plain flour
Salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2 eggs, beaten
3 cups fresh breadcrumbs (see notes)
Vegetable oil, for deep-frying
Lemon wedges, for serving
Slice the Squid tubes into two or three sections, turn them inside out, wipe firmly with a clean, damp cloth to remove any membrane, then slice into rings. Cut tentacles in half.
Season flour well with salt and pepper and place in a bowl. Place egg in another bowl and breadcrumbs in a third bowl.
Dust Squid in flour, shaking off any excess, then dip into egg, drain well and coat in breadcrumbs. Place on a plate, cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Heat oil in a wok or deep-fryer to 180ºC.
Deep-fry Squid, in batches, for 1-2 minutes, until golden and crisp; drain on paper towel. Skim oil between batches to remove any loose crumbs.
Sprinkle with salt and serve with lemon wedges.
To make fresh breadcrumbs, pulse day-old bread in a food processor until finely crumbed. It’s a great way to use up stale bread and you can keep them in the freezer to use whenever breadcrumbs are required.
Northern Calamari, Southern Calamari.