Thursday, 4 August 2011

Calamari Spaghettini

So... I bought some Calamari last week, intending to fry it up just like my father in law does. But the day I took it out of the freezer, I just wasn't feeling all of that oil. So I decided to do something a little different, which I later realized is sort of a classic Italian dish: pan fried calamari with spaghetti (spaghettini in this case) and tomato sauce.  This is what I ended up with:

Ingredients (4 servings)

1 lb of cleaned calamari
A few good glugs of olive oil
Lemon Juice
4 cloves of garlic
1/4 cup fresh oregano
1 tsp dried chili flakes
1 bay leaf
S & P to taste
1/2 an onion
14 oz can tomato puree
1/4 cup of white or rose wine
2 tbsp flat leaf parsley
1/2 lb spaghettini
Fresh Parmesan

So I started off by chopping up all of the garlic and fresh herbs. I let the Calamari, which I sliced up thinly, sit in 2 of the cloves of garlic, 2 tbsp fresh oregano, 1/2 tsp chili flakes, salt and pepper, and a splash each of olive oil and lemon juice. Let it marinate for about a half an hour.

Fry up the onion, finely diced, in some olive oil until they are translucent. Add in the chili flakes, salt and pepper, and at the very end the rest of the garlic. De-glaze the pan with the wine, and cook it out for a minute. Add your tomatoes and the fresh oregano, on the stem if you want (you can just pick it out at the end) and the bay leaf.

 Turn up the heat and bring the sauce to a slow boil. Turn it down and let simmer for about a half an hour. When coming to about half way through cooking, put on the water for your pasta and salt it to the point that it tastes like the ocean. Cook the pasta until al' dente, but save about 3 or 4 ladles full of the water before you drain it. 

 When everything is just about done, fry up the calamari in about a tbsp more of olive oil. It's important that you don't overcook it, because it'll be sooo rubbery it won't even be worth eating. I ended up cooking it in batches so that it wouldn't be too watery (since it was frozen calamari), and it took about 2 minutes for each batch. If you do end up with water in the pan, add it right into the pasta, it's good flavour! I knew it was done because the outer edges of the rings sort of stuck out, making the ring sort of concave. Does that make sense? You can sort of see it in the above picture, and I also gave it another squirt of lemon juice and served it in a bowl on the side to add directly on top of he pasta so it wouldn't disappear into the tomato sauce .

So, I like to put the pasta into a big bowl, and serve it family style. Add in a few splashes of olive oil so it doesn't stick together. Also add in the reserved pasta water, some tomato sauce, fresh parsley and lots of Parmesan. Give it a good stir, and then top it with more parsley and cheese, and serve it up with the calamari on each plate!

This is how much wine my husband poured himself because he saw I wouldn't have a full glass.... He's so funny.... And yes, that's his GI Joe shirt in the background.


  1. I am stopping by to return the blog love! Thanks so much for checking out and taking the time to comment. I am glad you did as I am super excited to find your beautiful site! I already pinned your Calamari Spaghettini and am looking forward to exploring more. I am a new follower!

  2. That looks just deliciouis! Come over and visit us today. We have a wonderful Southern Favorite on the menu.

  3. It looks delicious! I love calamari! Thank you so much for linking up!

  4. Thanks for sharing at What's Cooking Thursdays!

  5. Yum! This looks wonderful! I love calamari, and your dish looks so tasty! Thanks for sharing.

  6. At first I thought it was a GI Joe wine glass! :)

  7. Hi Kim,
    I was just telling my friend the other day how much I love Calamari and I hadn't had it in a while. Now I have a great new recipe to try, that I'm sure I will love. Thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday and hope to see again real soon! Hope you are having a great week end!
    Miz Helen

  8. What are the five words that came to your mind when mentioned "Mediterranean food"