Difficulty: Labor Intensive
Summertime. That's the time for calamari ripieni, stuffed squid. I grill it too with olive oil, until glistening gold, to remind me of a wonderful summer day lunching al fresco in a Sardinian trattoria some years ago. This recipe works best with small squid. If the squid you buy is not already cleaned, it takes about 10 minutes to do so. Serve the squid preceded by or on top of Spaghetti with Anchovy, with rice, or the variation below.
[photo: Clifford A. Wright]
Yield: Makes 4 servings
Preparation Time: 1 hour
1 1/2 pounds small squid, cleaned (about 24 squid)
Juice of 1/2 lemon
4 garlic cloves, very finely chopped
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh parsley
8 salted anchovy fillets, rinsed and chopped
1/2 cup dry bread crumbs
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
2 or 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (see step 3)
1. Cut the tentacles off below the eyes and place in lightly salted boiling water with the lemon juice for 4 minutes. Drain and chop.
2. In a bowl, mix the tentacles with the garlic, parsley, anchovies, bread crumbs, and season with salt and pepper. Rinse the squid and pat dry with paper towels. Stuff the squids using a narrow spoon, such as a baby spoon, and close with a toothpick interlaced through the opening.
3. Put the squid in a skillet with 2 tablespoons olive oil if making them alone or 4 tablespoons if making the vermicelli variation below. Turn the heat to medium-low and cook until the squid are golden brown on both sides, about 40 minutes. Serve hot.
Bring a large pot of abundantly salted water to a boil and add 3/4 pound vermicelli when the water is rolling. Drain when all dente. Remove the squid from the pan, add the vermicelli and sprinkle with 2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley and 2 finely chopped garlic, toss well and transfer to a serving bowl or platter and top with the reserved squid.