So easy to make and it tastes “exquisite” according to my little five year old. I take this as a real compliment. Here a recipe inspired in part, by the traditional Italian recipe and in part, by the Japanese way of making tempura. The results are very light calamari fritti.
1- Use fresh calamari if you can. If you use frozen ones, let them defrost in the fridge overnight.
2- Dip the calamari in very cold bubbly water (here in Mexico, I simply used Peñafiel). Make sure it is very cold (this “very cold water” tip is taken from the “Tempura” method). Let the calamari soak in the water for about 10 minutes.
3- In the meantime get the following ready: in a plat mix flour with coarse salt and freshly grind pepper. Place some olive oil in a large shallow pan, enough so that the calamari can fry on one side.
4- Dry the calamari with a napkin or paper towel. Cover one piece at the time with the flour and place in the oil. (the oil should be very hot but not fuming – lower the fire if need be). Make sure you don’t overcrowd the pan and that the pieces do not touch each other. Fry each side about 5 minutes for the first batch, it will be about 3 minutes for the second one as the oil will be hotter.
5- Serve immediately and sprinkle with fresh lime or lemon juice.
I served it for lunch with an avocado and tomato salad mix with lime juice and fresh basil, and basmati rice on the side.