Squid Links

Well, more category tags than links. There have been some slight changes to the Siren website. I added a recipe forum where you can all share your ideas and creations. I have also added category tags to all of the posts. So, I have tagged this post with all of the categories that apply to the other squid posts. If you want a summary of all things squid, click on the “Squid” category. If you want to see squid recipes, click on the “squid recipes” category and you will see them all. If you want source information, click on “Know your source.” Care instructions? Got it!

I hope that these changes make life a little bit easier for all of us!

Squid Ceviche

It is hot where I live. Too hot for me. I am avoiding all extraneous heat sources, including ovens and grills. This Squid Ceviche makes me happy for a number of reasons. Firstly, it’s almost like eating raw seafood. The squid is blanched to eliminate all health risks, but the cooking happens so quickly that it seems raw. Secondly, you only have to stand over a pot of boiling water for about a minute. Lastly, the squid ceviche, like all ceviches, is  served and eaten cold. Brilliant!

Squid Ceviche

1 lb of fresh squid tubes and tentacles (The amount you receive in a half share, double this recipe for a full share)

3 Tbsp fresh lime juice

1 Tbsp olive oil

1 Tbsp white vinegar

3 Tbsp chopped fresh cilantro

2 serrano chiles, seeded and minced

Pinch of sugar

1 medium red onion, minced

2 cloves of garlic, cut in half

Salt and pepper to taste

1. In a large bowl, combine all of the ingredients besides the squid. Set aside.

2. Prepare to blanch the squid. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Place a colander in the sink and prepare a large ice bath.

3. Wash the squid.

4. When the water is at a full boil, blanch the squid for no more than one minute.

5. Drain the squid in the colander and then place immediately into the ice bath. Let it cool for 10 minutes.

6. Remove the garlic pieces from the marinade. Add the squid to the marinade and cover. Refrigerate at least two hours before serving.



We will have squid from Monterey Bay this weekend. The squid will come to you cleaned and nearly ready to cook. What are your squid plans? Let me know over in the forum!

Squid. I really mean it this time.

We have squid. I saw them and then I touched them and then I ate some of them. They are real, I promise. You will get squid that have been gutted. They will not have ink sacks and the quills have been removed. There will still be skin to peel off if you would like. You should definitely check the tentacles for any beak remnants and rinse out the tubes to make sure that they are truly free from all guts. Peeling the skin is an easy task, it just rubs off. This becomes even easier if you choose to remove the little wings from the tubes as well. The wings pull right off. I dumped my tubes and tentacles into a big colander and rinsed out the tubes as I was peeling the skins and removing the fins. The whole process took me about five minutes to get through a pound. There is a very excellent squid breakdown guide here. You get to skip the first couple of steps. The squid origin story can be found here.


Squid in Spicy Tomato Sauce

2 Tbsp olive oil

3 cloves of garlic, minced

1/2 cup chopped onion

2 tsp red pepper flakes

1/3 cup red wine

1 32 oz. can crushed tomatoes (San Marzano!)

1 tsp Salt and 1/2 tsp black pepper

1 lb fresh squid, tentacles with tubes sliced into 1/2 inch rings

1 lb spaghetti

1/4 cup chopped parsley

1. Heat oil over medium heat in a large pot. Sauté onions until translucent. Add garlic and red pepper flakes. Cook for one minute, stirring constantly to keep the garlic from burning. Add the red wine, crushed tomatoes, salt and black pepper. Stir to combine.

2. Add squid to the tomato sauce. Reduce the heat to low and allow to simmer uncovered for 30-40 minutes. DO NOT BOIL. Let the squid cook slowly at a low temperature until it is tender. Add salt and pepper to taste.

3. Cook spaghetti two minutes less than the time suggested on the package.

4. Drain the spaghetti and add it to the tomato sauce. Stir to combine the pasta with the sauce and squid. Cook together for 2-5 minutes.

5. Dish the pasta into serving bowls and top with parsley, olive oil, and black pepper.


Squid Thieves!

Well, not really thieves but it sounds more dramatic than competent people who mishandled my squid, and I choose to always err on the side of drama. The squid was left behind at the dock in Monterey, and because it was left behind it was sold to another buyer. I understand why this happened. If the product sits it goes bad and then everyone loses money. I had a few minutes of PANIC as I tried to figure out what to deliver this week.

During the day I work in a seafood plant that cooks at least thirty thousand pounds of crab a day. I looked out of my office window towards the unloading area, and saw bins and bins of lively Dungeness crab. Problem solved.

I apologize for the lack of new crab material. This was a VERY last minute substitution on a very busy day. Enjoy these links to past crab posts!

Dungeness Crab Season: A Meditation (RANT)

Break it down!

Crab + Pasta = forever



Be not afraid!

Cleaning fresh squid can be intimidating. They are slimy and full of ink that can ruin your favorite sweater. Also, cleaning squid requires that you essentially tear them in half.

I find cleaning squid to be far less daunting than cleaning a fish. Once you dive in and go for it, I think you’ll agree. The guts are inoffensive and there isn’t any blood. It’ll be fun!

I had plans to make a glorious and witty how-to video, but then every electronic device that I own decided to gang up on me. Seriously, it’s the tech apocalypse here. I’m posting this from my iPhone. My sweet, trusty, still functional iPhone. It’s the one device that I’m on speaking terms with. Instead of mesmerizing you all with my witty squid banter, I am posting a link to a very thorough guide through the breakdown process.


Make sure to keep the squid nice and cold, both before and after they are cleaned. Squid discolors when not kept below 40 degrees. Squid can be stored on ice, and direct contact with the ice won’t hurt them. This squid will freeze beautifully. I would recommend freezing after cleaning so that you have delicious tubes and tentacles ready to go.

Enjoy your squid and I’ll see you all tomorrow!

Know Your Source: Market Squid from Monterey

Our squid comes from Monterey Bay and was caught by Captain Frank Aliotti and crew on his boat, El Dorado.  Frank is a second generation fisherman who was born and raised in Monterey.  The El Dorado was his father’s boat before Frank took it over.

The squid were caught using a purse seine.  A purse seine is a circular net that can trap schooling fish (or squid) that are close to the surface of the water.  A purse seine minimizes by-catch because it allows the fisherman to target a specific species.

I am very excited for you all to try FRESH market squid.  Most of the squid you have ever had has been previously frozen.  Whole squid will take more work than the tubes and tentacles that you find in the frozen food section, but the texture should be more tender than is possible with the thawed out stuff.

Grilled Squid Salad

Squid are so Sci-Fi.  They look like little aliens, tasty aliens who float around and squirt ink when they are threatened.  I love an animal with a creative defense mechanism, and I have always been fascinated by cephalopods.  Adult squid spend days near the ocean floor, coming up to the surface at night to feed.  They are attracted to light and sparkles (who isn’t?), so squid boats go out at night, outfitted with bright lamps aimed down at the water.  Squid boats look like deep-space explorers out on the water.  I really tried to get one to take me out, but squidders seemed reluctant to let me tag along for 8 hours on a dark boat with no prior squidding experience.  Something about liability blah blah blah.  I still dream of freezing out on the water, getting slightly seasick, and watching the weird tentacled creatures get pulled out of the water.  My dreams are special.

Market Squid, the squid you will be breaking down (more on that tomorrow) and eating this week, are tiny little guys who swarm near the eastern shore of the Pacific ocean from Baja to Alaska.  They are a great find for those of us trying to eat sustainably.  They only live for four to nine months, and during that time they breed breed BREED.  Good job!

Do you see that gorgeous photo up at the top of this post? It means that we are lucky enough to once again have a recipe from Kimberley Hasselbrink of The Year in Food.  Kimberley put squid on her seasonal food guide for June, right when squid season reopened, because she is smart like that.  You should definitely read her seasonal food guides to reap the benefits of her wisdom.  I heard nothing but raves about her seared salmon recipe, and as expected, this grilled squid salad is delicious.  I made some for dinner tonight and ate it in record time.  It’s a beautiful salad.  Make this and let me know what you think!

DO NOT BE INTIMIDATED BY BREAKING DOWN SQUID!  I will be posting a brief how-to video before the drop on Saturday.  It’s easy!  And fun!

Yield: about 4 servings

1.5 pounds whole squid,cleaned
1 cup halved cherry tomatoes
1 cup arugula
1 cup chopped radicchio
1 cup cooked garbanzo beans
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 lemon, halved and juiced
3 tablespoons olive oil
salt + pepper to taste

First, marinate the squid. In a mixing bowl, combine the squid with 2 tablespoons olive oil, half the lemon juice, the minced garlic, and a generous sprinkling of salt and pepper. Set aside. You’ll want them to sit for no more than a half hour in their marinating liquid, because the acid of the lemon juice will start to cook them.

Prepare your grill for the squid.

While the charcoal briquettes/gas grill are readying, prepare the rest of the salad by mixing together the cherry tomatoes, arugula, radicchio and garbanzo beans. Set this aside and dress at the very end.

When your grill is ready, place squid on the grill. You may use skewers if you’d like, but it’s not necessary. Grill for about 2 minutes on each side. (If your grill is less hot, you may need to increase the time, just a little.)

Remove squid from grill. Slice squid body into one inch sections. Leave tentacles whole.

Toss squid with the rest of the salad. Add the remaining lemon juice, another tablespoon of olive oil, and salt and pepper to taste.

Best served immediately.