Crispy chilli squid

Crispy chilli squid

I Love Curry
Jonathan Gregson

I love this way of cooking squid, perhaps because I have so many fond memories of eating calamari under the Mediterranean sun, or maybe it’s the texture of the soft squid against the crisp coating.The marinade adds a kick while the lovely mayonnaise finishes it off and is especially good at flattering squid which hasn’t had enough time in the marinade. But you can forget the mayonnaise and serve the squid simply with lemon wedges, if you prefer.

For the marinade


Quantity Ingredient
2 fresh large fat red chillies, deseeded
10g fresh root ginger, peeled weight
3 large garlic cloves
1 1/2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1 1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil
3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
salt, to taste

For the squid

Quantity Ingredient
300g prepared squid, rings, tentacles and flaps
vegetable oil, for deep-frying
3 tablespoons semolina
5 tablespoons plain flour

For the chilli, lemon and garlic mayonnaise

Quantity Ingredient
150g mayonnaise
3 teaspoons lemon juice
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 teaspoon chilli powder, or to taste
1 fat garlic clove, grated into a paste, or to taste


  1. Whizz together all the ingredients for the marinade with 2 tbsp water to make a fine paste. Mix into the squid and leave to marinate for an hour or more, or for several hours in the fridge.
  2. Stir together the ingredients for the mayonnaise and season to taste.
  3. Heat around 7.5cm of vegetable oil in a wok, karahi or saucepan until a small piece of bread dropped in sizzles immediately.
  4. Mix together the semolina and flour. Remove the squid from its marinade and dredge it in the flour mixture. Pat off any excess, then add the squid to the deep-frying pan in two or three batches (make sure not to overcrowd the pan). Fry for two to three minutes, or until golden and crisp.
  5. Remove with a slotted spoon, place on kitchen paper and keep warm while you fry the remaining squid. Serve hot, with the mayonnaise on the side.
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