Weekly Salad 14: Spicy Calamari


Squid salad


Do you think I ate that all of that Nutella Bread Pudding? I can tell you with a clean conscience that I did not. I enjoyed my generous serving and the rest went into the metabolic abyss that is Pierre’s stomach.

Wandering Chopsticks outed my inconsistency and indeed, it seems wrong to post a diet salad one day and then proceed with a gazillion calorie-laden and thigh-enlarging bread pudding the next. But the key word is Moderation – a word that rises and falls in its efficacy around here but one that I subscribe to nevertheless.

I do make and eat a lot of Vietnamese and various other salads regularly. I also exercise [fairly] regularly. Still, I’m no willowy twig. I eat chocolate and butter and cream and whatever else I like on occasion but I try to be conscious of the amount and to not over-eat. While my weight may fluctuate somewhat at times, I am committed to eating right most days – well, except on Sundays and on any ethnic holiday 😉

These salads keep me *in check* and they manage to delight me as well.



INGREDIENTS: (2 main dish servings)

  • 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
  • 1.5 Tbl of Spicy Sauce/Dressing
  • cooking oil


Add oil to your wok or skillet and turn the heat to high. Quickly fry and sear the calamari for about 45 seconds (not more than a minute). Remove from heat and toss with the rest of the ingredients.

Next, pat yourself on the back for getting a healthy, tasty meal together in such little time.

Serve immediately.

Bon appétit!


12 Responses to “Weekly Salad 14: Spicy Calamari”

  1. Kittie Says:

    Lovely – I’ll bookmark this for the next time I find baby squid!

  2. Fearless Kitchen Says:

    This looks great, and we both love calamari. Not only that, but it’s comparatively cheap at our local Whole Foods! Your salads always look delicious. Eating light doesn’t feel like deprivation when the salads are flavorful and exciting.

  3. Wandering Chopsticks Says:

    Oh dear, I have a feeling your next recipe is gonna be triple chocolate cake with buttercream frosting… 😉

    I had squid last night for dinner. Well, rather my youngest aunt used dried squid and shrimp to flavor her broth for hu tieu. It was yummy and I had forgotten how much I like squid.

  4. Warda Says:

    Bonjour Christine,
    I think I might be overcooking my squids. I don’t cook them on high heat though but on medium heat for 2 minutes. I would have cook them less but Mo thinks they look raw. He thinks that everything should look brown to be cooked…Vraiment!
    Love, love, love your photo. I think my favorite so far. I can see it hanged on my kitchen wall.

  5. mycookinghut Says:

    What a great and beautiful dish! You are really the queen of salad!!

  6. holybasil Says:

    Kittie – Thanks – and please let me know how yours turns out!

    Fearless Kitchen – Thanks! Yes, I totally agree that variation is an important factor in not getting bored or feeling deprived.

    WC – Hahaha – hahaha 🙂 You need to stop reading my mind, WC! I had to change my post because of that! No, I’m kidding.

    Dried squid and shrimp are really key to making good broth for that soup – you’re absolutely right. Thanks for the reminder about that – I have some that my aunt sent me from Viet Nam. I’ll have to make it soon.

    Salut Warda! Merci bc !
    C’est dommage la peur de cuisine mi-cuit 🙂 So, is sushi out of the question? A++

    Mycookinghut – Oh thanks!

  7. Jen Says:

    Every time I am on raw diets (or eating foods that are mostly fresh and raw) I lose a lot of weight. I guess that also coincides with times when it is hot and I am really active… because I can’t stand the thought of eating anything hot when it’s already hot. There were days in So Cal when I’d eat watermelon and oranges and drink water. Crazy – I know… This salad is right up my alley for my summer moods! I love squid and this one is gorgeous. Now I’m craving sushi.

  8. White On Rice Couple Says:

    Spicy? Squid? ….I need to add another “S” word here….Sensational!!
    I know you made this beautiful salad just for me, I just know ya did! Big hugs to you ! 🙂

  9. Warda Says:

    You know what! he ate sushi. Once. Or twice. But it’s not something he enjoys, unlike me who can’t stop eating it once I start.

  10. holybasil Says:

    Jen – We used to eat watermelon with rice. Sounds weird but very good in the California heat. I’m crossing my fingers and toes for your upcoming so that you can eat at that fabulous sushi place you’ve mentioned on your blog. Now you’ve got me thinking about sushi! 🙂

    WORC – Bah, oui — this salad was just for ya 🙂

    Warda – I’m so glad you like sushi! I knew I liked you for a reason! 🙂

  11. Chez US Says:

    We made this salad last night – so GOOD! Thank you for a great recipe. We posted about it and referred back to your site!

  12. We Are Never Full Says:

    This is the best way to make calamari – sauteed or grilled. America has been so used to fried calamari, I think many think it would taste gross without that thick batter. But to me, it just masks the taste and awesome texture! This looks like a beautiful recipe.

    amy @ we are never full

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