This recipe comes straight from the pages of my second book Fuel Up. If you like it and would like other similar nibbles (tasty AND healthy) please consider picking up a copy of Fuel Up by clicking on the cover on the right hand sidebar. Thanks!
It’s no secret, I love calamari (also known as squid). It’s not expensive, but feels special when I make it because it’s not an everyday meal. Since I’m always watching my grocery bills, I find myself using calamari more often than shrimp nowadays when I want something other than chicken. It’s high in protein, low in fat, and pairs perfectly with other ingredients I love like heart healthy olive oil, tomatoes and herbs.
If you missed some of my previous calamari recipes or want to learn more ways to use squid, check out Broiled Calamari with Lemon and Parsley, Faux Fried Calamari and Calamari Marinara to learn how to prep this delightful seafood by broiling, baking, or simmering in tomato sauce. Then in today’s recipe you’ll learn how to boil it (briefly!) and marinate to squiddy perfection. *The secret to tender calamari is devastatingly simple – don’t boil it longer than you absolutely have to and immediately put it in ice water to chill it fast. Now you know.*
This Italian marinated seafood salad is a real treat, especially in summertime when tomatoes and herbs are at their peak, and cool meals are extra-enticing. I love the medley of olive oil, lemon juice, herbs and fresh tomatoes with the tender calamari. To keep your calamari tender (not tough or chewy), keep the boiling brief and put it into an ice bath to stop cooking.
This recipe may be enjoyed on its own or served over a bed of greens or pasta. The delicious flavors develop even more by the second day, so leftovers are worth fighting for!
Makes 4 dinner-sized servings
- 1 ½ pounds cleaned squid, tubes and tentacles
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 large garlic clove, minced
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- ½ red onion, halved lengthwise, then thinly slice crosswise
- 15 pitted kalamata olives, halved lengthwise
- 2 cups cherry or grape tomatoes, halved (¾ pound)
- 1 red bell pepper, cut into thin strips
- 1 cup loosely packed fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
- ½ cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves
- Rinse squid and pat dry with paper towels. Halve clusters of tentacles lengthwise, and cut bodies into 1/3” wide rings.
- Cook squid in a 5-quart pot of boiling water until just opaque, 60-90 seconds. Drain in a colander and immediately transfer to a bowl of ice water to stop cooking. When squid is cool, drain and pat dry.
- In a small bowl, whisk together lemon juice, vinegar, oil, garlic salt and pepper.
- In a large bowl, combine squid, onion, olives, tomatoes, red pepper, parsley and basil. Toss with dressing and season to taste with salt and pepper. Let stand at least 15 minutes before serving.
Makes 4 servings