Stuffed squid with rocket leaves
Chef Robert Castellani came to Australia from Italy as a child in the 1960s.
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- 12 small fresh squid - approximately 7-8cm long*
- 2 tbsp freshly chopped parsley
- 5 handfuls fresh rocket leaves
- 1 tsp chopped fresh oregano
- 1 tsp chopped garlic
- Juice of 2 lemons
- 120g plain flour
- 30g cornflour
- 60-100ml beer, lager or bitter
- 8 fresh sage leaves
- 4 anchovy fillets
- 100ml extra virgin olive oil
- Extra olive oil for frying
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Prepare stuffing by combining parsley, one handful of rocket (roughly chopped), chopped oregano, garlic, half the lemon juice and a few grindings of pepper in a small bowl. Place equal amounts of stuffing into the cavity of each squid (approximately one teaspoon in each). Reserve in the refrigerator.
Combine 90g of plain flour and all the cornflour and add enough beer to achieve a pouring consistency. Season with salt and pass the mixture through a sieve to remove lumps that may have formed. Reserve in the refrigerator.
Place remaining 30g of flour on a plate. Lightly flour the squid bodies (note: not the tentacles). Fry the squid bodies and tentacles in a small amount of olive oil at a high temperature to cook quickly until golden brown on both sides and the tentacles are crispy. Drain on paper towel. Season with salt and pepper.
Sandwich the anchovy between two sage leaves. Dredge in flour and dip in beer batter. Shallow fry in olive oil until golden brown and drain on paper towel.
Prepare a dressing with the olive oil, remaining lemon juice and salt and pepper, and then dress the remaining rocket. Arrange dressed rocket leaves in the centre of each plate. Arrange the squid decoratively around rocket (3 to each plate) and garnish with the anchovy sage fritter. Drizzle remaining dressing over the squid and serve immediately.
* To clean squid, remove the head and eyes, reserve tentacles. Rinse interior cavity and remove the thin filmy skin. Or you can ask your fishmonger to do this. Before using, wash and pat dry.