Tentacles of any kind terrify me. Especially from those dreadful 100 legged critters from back home – The Centipede. I KNOW they are Beelzebub’s doing. There is just no logical reason those things need to exist.
There are, however, some tentacles I don’t need a war plan for — those from squid. Yes, THOSE tentacles, along with the squid arms that go into making those crispy rings of joy, that make my heart strings zing. Place a bowl of freshly fried crispy Calamari in front of me and my eyes pop out like Wolf Eyes. I love them in the morning, love them in the evening, when I’m feeling blue….wait – that sounds like a Gregory Isaac song.
My first vivid memory of trying Calamari was in my early years as a kid in New York City during one of our Sunday family outings to Johnny’s Reef Restaurant at City Island. As a squeamish 7 year old, if my parents had told me I was eating the remnants of a little squiggly sea creature with long arms and tentacles, I probably would not have eaten it.
Calamari is always the disappearing act of our ordered appetizers. Seriously, I’d pass up a cool mil’ for a bowl of hot crispy tentacles anytime. Ok – well, maybe not. But I’m sure you catch my drift by now.
I’m in love with Busaba Eatthai’s Thai Calamari. I was also impressed with Noodle House’s calamari in a recent takeout order. I’m also in love with Cocoa Kitchen’s Sautéed Squid piled high with green beans, courgette, fennel, lemon, black olives, feta, and nib oil – a true baptism of textures and flavors.
So I decided to fancy up my own house-made fried Calamari with some Turcu Firenzi White Truffle Oil. And I’m digging the results! A light spray right before cooking will give your calamari an earthy flavor that will leave you just food drunk.
Go ahead and try it out!
- Vegetable oil (about 1 cup)
- 1 pound clean squid rings
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup cornmeal
- 1 TB Siracha
- 1 tablespoon GOYA®Adobo or Cajun Seasoning (or any other seasoning blend you love)
- Turci Firenzi White Truffle Spray
- 3/4 cups full fat milk or Laban
- Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 lemon, cut into wedges
Making It Happen
- If you are using frozen calamari, rinse and place in a colander to drain for about 30 minutes.
- Once they are no longer waterlogged, combine with milk and Siracha in a bowl for at least one hour.
- Drain the liquid and get your vegetable oil hot and ready for deep-frying at about 180C/350F.
- Combine flour, cornmeal, seasoning blend and give it a few grinds of black pepper.
- Dunk your rings in the flour – making sure they are fully coated – and give them a quick spritz of Turci Firenzi White Truffle Spray.
- Drop in the hot oil. Cook in two batches if your pan or fryer is not big enough.
- Remove and place in a colander to drain excess oil and immediately sprinkle some coarse salt.
- Squeeze some fresh lemon over them and serve up with your favorite dip, whether it be a marina sauce, tartar sauce, garlic mayo or whatever tickles your fancy.