Calamari fishing can be really exciting or really frustrating. You sometimes get to see the squid take, but more often than not they won't take anything. Fishing really slow and deep works best, using natural coloured jigs. This summer has seen the return of the calamari in Tassie; I haven't seen so many since I was a kid.
With all this settled autumn weather I decided to take my kayak for a bit of a paddle and grab a few calamari before work. It was a pretty good morning out: I ended up with five (though lost a few because I was dicking around taking photos). On the way home I grabbed a few tomatoes from the stand at the Kingston golf course (anyone who lives in Hobart will know how good they are).
So keeping it pretty simple with some fresh calamari and super awesome tomatoes, we had this for tea:
Ingredients (serves two):
1 medium calamari including tentacles
3 cups of cooked freekeh
2 cups diced tomato flesh
1 cup chopped parsley
1 tbs finely diced red onion
Juice of 1/2 lemon
A few good lugs of olive oil
Black pepper and salt to season
Cook the freekeh by adding two cups of freekeh to five cups of cold water in a pot. Bring to the boil then reduce the heat to a simmer. Place on the lid and cook for about 15 minutes, or until the water has been absorbed and the freekeh is tender. Drain and allow to cool slightly.
Clean the calamari by removing the head, then the wings and skin. Pull out the backbone and turn inside out to remove any more innards. Cut the tentacles away from the head. And cut the body into rings.
With a bit of oil fry the calamari in a hot pan with some salt and pepper until it has just turned white.
Combine the freekeh, calamari, lemon, oil, parsley, onion and tomato and you are pretty much done. Season to taste.
Samuel Shelley and Catherine Miller are Island Menu: a hunger-inducing blog about growing, picking, fishing and cooking good food in Tasmania. Do not read it on an empty stomach.