Marinated squid, smoked chilli, fennel and lemon salad

Marinated squid, smoked chilli, fennel and lemon salad

Mowie Kay

There are two ways to cook squid quickly. The methods with which most people are familiar involve grilling and frying, which have to be done last minute. The advantage of the method in this recipe is all in the timing – you can blanch the squid, then leave it in its marinade until you need to serve it. This makes it the perfect, prepare-ahead salad. Just make sure that if you leave it to marinate in the refrigerator, you give it enough time to return to room temperature before you serve it.


Quantity Ingredient
60ml olive oil
1 lemon, Finely grated zest and juice
1 teaspoon ouzo, (optional)
pinch caster sugar
1/2-1 teaspoon smoked chilli powder or paste, (such as chipotle)
400g squid, cleaned and cut into rings, tentacles included
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
200g new potatoes, boiled in their skins, kept warm then sliced, (optional)
1 fennel bulb, finely sliced
1 lemon, segmented, or use orange if you prefer
2 red chillies, finely sliced, (deseeded for less heat if you like)
leaves from small bunches of parsley, greek basil and oregano, (the small-leaved stuff if you can get it, otherwise regular basil)
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper


  1. In a large bowl, whisk together the olive oil, lemon zest and juice, ouzo, if using, sugar and chilli powder or paste. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  2. Bring a large saucepan of salted water to the boil. When it is nicely rolling, add all the squid and garlic and boil for precisely 40 seconds. Drain and immediately add to the prepared marinade.
  3. Leave the squid to marinate for at least an hour, then mix with the new potatoes, if using, fennel and lemon. Add the chillies, parsley, basil and oregano and toss everything gently together. Serve at room temperature.

How to cut

  • Unless I specify that the skin should be left on, all the recipes in this book require you to prepare citrus so that the skin and at the very least the outer membrane is cut away. The way to do this is to top and tail the citrus and sit it firmly on your chopping board. Then cut from top to bottom, following the contour of the fruit, making sure you are cutting away the pith and outer membrane as you go. When you have cut all the way around, trim off any other bits of white pith you can see. You can then slice or dice the fruit as it is, flicking out pips as you go. For membrane-less segments, take the fruit in one hand and cut along one side of each segment – you can then either cut down the other side to release the segment or you can carefully scrape the flesh in one movement from the centre to the edge – this will ensure you remove every bit of flesh from that side. You should always do this over a bowl to catch any juice, and I always squeeze out the discarded peel and membranes too.
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