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Sardinian Calamari Salad

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Sardinian Calamari Salad

Sardinian Calamari Salad

Hank Shaw
This calamari salad recipe is based off a similar lobster salad recipe common in Sardinia. Seafood salads, known as frutti di mare across Italy, are only as good as their ingredients, and to make this dish shine, you will need top-quality squid, fresh herbs and excellent tomatoes -- preferably vine-ripened ones from your backyard or farmer's market. This is also time to break out the really good olive oil. This recipe serves 4-6 as an appetizer.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 1 minute

Total Time: 16 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb cleaned calamari
  • 2-3 finely chopped shallots
  • 2 T. chopped basil leaves
  • 2 T. chopped mint leaves
  • 1 lb tomatoes, seeded and chopped
  • 1 finely chopped garlic clove
  • Chopped leaves from a head of celery (optional)
  • 1/2 cup top-quality olive oil
  • Juice of a lemon
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preparation:

Prepare the calamari. Rinse the squid and cut the tubes into rings. Cut the tentacles into bite-sized pieces.

Bring a pot of salted water to a boil, then toss the squid into it and turn off the heat. Count off no more than 30 seconds, then remove the squid and place in a large bowl.

Prepare the salad. Add the herbs, shallot, garlic, celery leaves if you're using them, and the tomatoes to the bowl with the calamari in it. I like to use multicolored tomatoes for this recipe because it looks nice; you don't have to, just use good tomatoes.

Sprinkle a little salt on the salad and mix well, then add the olive oil and toss to combine. At this point the salad can be stored at room temperature (covered) for several hours. While you can refrigerate it, tomatoes and basil really suffer when subjected to such cold temperatures so I never do this.

Right before you serve, grind black pepper over the salad and add the lemon juice.

I like an austere white wine with this, such as a Pinot Grigio, a Chenin Blanc or a Sauvignon Blanc.

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