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Calamari Salad

Calamari Salad

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We discovered this wonderful cooking site, Holy Basil.  Not only will it make you hungry visually, but, I can say that the recipes are spot on.  I am always looking for new recipes to try out in the kitchen, ones that are easy for weekday cooking and do not involve pasta!  Christine is doing this wonderful series, the ” weekly salad” and all of the salads look wonderful.  She seems to be switching off weekly between “French” and “Asian”.  We decided to go with something completely different from what we usually cook, a Calamari Salad.

The recipe is very simple, the most work involved is prepping the veggies.  The calamari cooks up within a minute and you have a complete meal. 

I could not find the Thai peppers so I did substitute with a jalapeno pepper;  which, gave it a lot of kick.  The lime juice cooled the spiciness down and the sugar rounded it into a really great sweet and savory flavor, that lingered for the right amount of time.  

You will not be bored with this salad as there is a lot going on with it;  crispy veggies, coolness of the cilantro, and the calamari was not chewy since it was cooking quickly.  

Recipe:  Calamari Salad

** Holy Basil – 2 servings



  • 2 red chilies (Thai bird)
  • 1 garlic clove
  • juice of 1 large lime
  • 2 Tbl. sugar (+ more to taste)
  • 2 Tbl. fish sauce
  • 1/4 cup water


  • 1 lb (500 g) cleaned small squid (calamari), tentacles left whole and body cut into 1/2 inch (1.5 cm) rings, drained and patted dry
  • 1/2 large English cucumber, de-seeded and cut into thin, 2-inch (5cm) julienned strips
  • 1 medium-sized red bell pepper, de-seeded and cut into thin, 2-inch (5cm) julienned strips
  • cilantro
  • white sesame seeds, for garnish
  • cooking oil

How To:


  1. Make your dressing by smashing the chilies and garlic in a mortar and pestle. Add the sugar, lime, fish sauce and water.
  2. Mix thoroughly to dissolve all the sugar.
  3. Taste and add more sugar/fish sauce/lime according to your preference.
  4. Set aside.

How To – Salad:

  1. Add oil to your wok or skillet and turn the heat to high.
  2. Quickly fry and sear the calamari for about 45 seconds (not more than a minute).
  3. Remove from heat and toss with the rest of the ingredients, along with the dressing.
  4. Serve.
  5. Eat.

More Calamari Salads

Fried Calamari Salad with Caperberries and Lemon Aioli

Marinated Wild Calamari Salad

Greek Calamari Salad


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Tuesday 29th of April 2008

Oh, great salad, Denise! I think you've got it exactly when you mention how the lime juice cools the heat of the chili and the sugar rounds things out. Thanks for making and posting this - how cool!


Saturday 26th of April 2008

Waou!! I love calamari and this salad sounds really delicious!!


Thursday 24th of April 2008

Visiting from W on R..we adore this salad and have lots of calamari in the freezer to use up too.

White On Rice Couple

Thursday 24th of April 2008

This is one of my favorite salads by Christine! Anything with squid is right up my eating alley! She has a great recipe here. Your piled high salad is really tempting me to make this for dinner tomorrow!