The fisherwoman’s recipe

So this weekend I decided to make up for all the madness of travelling, being away and all that. This ‘making up’ was not just for the husband but I thought I needed some myself, and the best way I knew of doing this was through a home cooked meal. Our weekend meals are usually full of seafood and I didn’t want this one to be any different.

Saturday morning called for a trip to the fish market, this time I was going to one of those wholesale places that a friend recommended. Now I knew that this one was good but I didn’t think it would be so mindblowingly good! I went crazy just looking at all the variety here and I felt like a kid in a candy store. Really! Now with so much seafood around I just had to buy a little bit of everything – fish, prawn and squid.

This was going to be the first time I would have made squid all on my own. The last time I did, it was cleaned and cut and given to me, and I had my dad watching over my shoulder giving me all the instructions. Yes I’ll admit I was a little apprehensive so I began asking the lady who sold it to me. She was friendly, warm and kind, not only did she give me valuable tips on how to cook the squid to perfection but she also gave me a recipe to make this sukka. The recipe is so simple and you can put the whole thing together in just a couple of minutes. You can serve this one either as a starter or even as an accompaniment to main course.

Squid green masala sukka

7 squid, cleaned and cut into rings
1 medium-sized onion, chopped
Juice of 1/2 a lime
Salt to taste
Oil

For the green masala
5 stalks of green garlic, the garlic coarsely chopped and the leaves a little more roughly done
4 sprigs of mint, use only the leaves
2 green chillies, roughly chopped
1/2 inch of ginger, peeled and chopped
A handful of coriander leaves, chopped

Grind all the ingredients for the masala together with some salt and just about 1 tbsp of water. You need to have a dryish, almost coarse paste at the end of it. If the chillies and garlic haven’t been ground to a paste, it is fine because you need to be able to bite into it.

Heat oil in a pan and add the chopped onions to this, sprinkle some salt and saute until it turns golden brown. Now add the ground green masala to this and cook until the raw aroma disappears.

Next, first lower the flame a bit and then add the squid to this. Sprinkle some salt. Keep stirring around so that the masala coats the squid. When the squid begins to curl along the rim you know it’s done. Remove from the flame, squeeze some lime juice and serve immediately.

Here are some things you need to know while cooking squid (all tips courtesy the lady I bought it from):

* Make sure you clean the squid and ensure it is free from all dirt
*Do not soak the squid in water, this will make it absorb the liquid and become sticky during the cooking process
*If you want to marinate the squid use a mix that doesn’t have salt, if you add salt at this stage it causes all the water to release and you end up eating something that’s dry
*The easiest way to ensure you have delicious, moist squid to eat is to spread the rings on a paper towel on dry cloth till it is completely dry
*When you’re buying the squid, it shouldn’t smell fishy or anything, it should smell like the sea – salty, breezy and fresh!

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