Ideal as finger food or appetizer, fresh squid is quickly deep-fried in this easy salt and pepper squid. The quick cooking shallow fry method results in a tender, crispy, and flavorful bite. The squid can be substituted with calamari or octopus if you like.
The seasoning process uses an egg white wash followed by a cornstarch base with salt and pepper. This simple and light seasoning doesn’t overpower the squid or create a heavy coating. The cornstarch helps create a crisp coating.
Make sure the oil stays at a hot temperature by cooking the squid in small batches. This will ensure the squid cooks quickly and doesn’t become greasy. The quick cook time creates a tender squid; if overcooked it can become rubbery.
Salt and Pepper Squid Recipe
- 1 pound fresh squid
- 4 lemons
- 1 cup cornstarch (cornflour)
- 1 tablespoon fresh ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon sea salt
- 2 teaspoons white sugar
- 3 egg whites
- oil for deep frying
- tartar sauce for dipping
- 1 bowl
- 2 shallow bowls
- wok or skillet
- Slice the squid so it lays flat then lightly score both sides in a crisscross pattern. Cut into bite-sized square pieces.
- Place the squid along and lemon juice in a bowl. Leave to marinate for 10 minutes while you prepare the salt and pepper mix.
- In a shallow bowl mix together the cornstarch, pepper, salt, and sugar.
- In a separate shallow bowl lightly whisk the egg whites with a fork.
- Dip the squid pieces in the egg mixture then gently toss through the salt and pepper mix, shaking off any excess.
- Fill a wok, skillet, or pot with a maximum of ⅓ oil then heat to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C).
- In small batches, add the squid and cook for about 1 minute or until lightly browned. Remove and rest on a paper towel to drain. Serve with tartar sauce.
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