Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Cooking Lab - Spanish Calamares Rellenos (Stuffed Calamari)

Stuffed calamari may seem a little fussy and complicate dish to make at first, but it is actually a super easy meal to prepare and is sure to impress family and friends!

(c) GMV - Got My Vote!'*\(^o^)/*

Relleno in Spanish means stuffed or filling. After a messy start, you will be rewarded with a delicious clean seafood dish.

I found some extremely fresh wild-caught calamari at the market today. I was suddenly inspired and was excited to do something with them.
- Wild-caught fresh calamari (size small-medium) $17.00/kg x 6
- Risotto (Please see previous Cooking Lab recipe!)
- Spanish olive oil 2T
- Spanish salsa & BBQ sauces
- Sea salt and grounded pepper to taste
- Baby rocket & cherry tomato 
- Lemon wedges
1.Clean the Calamari by removing all innards and the cuttlebone. Gently peel off the skin membrane. 

2. Gently clean the heads and the tentacles. Remove the eyes and squeeze out the peak/ball located at the center of the tentacle. 

(Tip: Firmly yet gently pull the head away, the ink sac and the soft cartridge will come out with it.)

3. Wash and pat dry.
4. Tonight, I am going to use some of the delicious leftover truffle risotto from last night's dinner party and use it as the stuffing. (Feeling pretty proud of myself to come up with alternate use for leftover!         ^_−☆)

You can put any stuffing you prefer - Anything! The sky is the limit! That is why I am so exited.
5. Keep the opening of the calamari as wide as possible. Start by carefully stuffing about 2T of the risotto inside the body of calamari. Fill only about 3/4 full.

(Tip: do not overstuff or it will burst during cooking - and that will not be a pretty sight! The filling will expand and the calamari will shrink during cooking.)
6. 'Sew' a toothpick through the opening of the calamari to hold it together.
7. Heat about 2T olive oil in pan on medium heat. Place calamari on hot pan and slowly rotate so it cooks evenly on all sides.

(Tip: Don't overcook the calamari or it will be chewy and unappetizing. That is one of the main reason why I used a cooked stuffing instead of raw stuffing.

This shortcut means you can just concentrate on cooking the calamari without the added worry of checking if the stuffing is cooked through or not.) (^_-)
8. Wow!~ look at the golden tubes! Now the fun starts from here!~
9. Thinly slit across to allow the exposure of inner goodness.

What can I say? Except the sac shape of the calamari screams for a good stuffing
I am so fond of any dishes that are plump and bursting of fullness. Just like my money sacks - wishfully!~ (^。^)
10. Generously add the Spanish Salsa and BBQ sauce across the slits. Let the sauces soak through. Serve warm.
Product Information:
- MOJO PICÔN Spanish Salsa Verde 170g $8.50
(Canola oil, Vinegar, Parsley, Garlic, Salt, Corriander.)
- MOJO PICÔN Spanish BBQ Sauce 170g $8.50
(Canola oil, Vinegar, Garlic, Water, Paprika, Cumin, Salt)
www. mojopicon.com.au
(Unit 5,10-14 Lilian Fowler Place Marrickville NSW 2203. 

These 2 sauces are so amazingly delicious together. Perfect on Chorizos and on scramble eggs. Highly recommended.

If you like seafood, this is your meal and these are your sauces!
11. Season with sea salt and cracked black pepper and serve with baby rockets and cherry tomatoes. Drizzle generously with lemon juice.

Result - Deliciously succulent!
Once you master the technique, you can get creative with the fillings. Plus the calamari can be stuffed ahead of time and cooked when needed!

I absolutely adore versatile dishes - so you don't get the same old boring dishes every night.

Happy photo feasting~