I love fried calamari! When we lived in Italy we often ate calamari. My oldest son was three when we moved to Italy and attended Italian school until he was six. I would have to fend him off when ever I ordered calamari fritto. His favorite part was the tentacles. Mmmmmm, crunchy!
It has not always been easy to find calamari in grocery stores in the US. It is now easier to find it all cleaned and ready for cooking. You can even find it frozen and pre-breaded. There are lots of ways to prepare calamari, you can put it in stews and soups, you can serve it marinated, in a salad, or fried (my favorite).
You´ll find lots of recipes for calamari fritto but here are two simple ones. The first is more in the style of the Veneto. The second is from southern Italy. Either style makes a wonderful antipasto or main dish. Be careful not to overcook the calamari. It will get tough.
- 1/2 to 1 pound calamari sliced into rings
- 1 cup flour
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp cayenne pepper
- Enough vegetable oil to fill bottom of heavy skillet to 1/2"
- Clean calamari and keep chilled.
- Mix flour, paprika and cayenne in shallow bowl.
- Heat oil to 375 degrees.
- Toss a handful of calamari with flour, shake off excess.
- Fry for 3 or 4 minutes or until golden brown. Drain on paper towels and salt to taste.