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Calamari Fritters

  • Category: Main Dish, Seafood
  • Submitted By: Isaac Owsley
  • Town/State: Sonora, CA
  • Serves: 6
  • Preparation Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Cooking time: 20 minutes

This is a recipe I came up with while trying to find a suitable substitute for Conch Fritters, having developed a taste for them while on a cruise in the Caribbean. Since authentic conch is in rare supply here in California I decided to go with the next best thing, that being the abundance of fresh calamari – also known as squid.

Whether it is deep fried or served in a smooth lemon butter sauce, calamari is undoubtedly to me one of the unsung heroes of seafood, getting a bad reputation from being all too often overcooked and rubbery but when prepared correctly it is tender and mild. The batter recipe used here is a modified Hush puppy recipe that is very simple to make and that you can easily omit the calamari and serve as a side dish at your next fish and chips meal or catfish fry.

Amount Measure Ingredients
1 cup Corn Meal, yellow or white
1/2 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 cup frozen corn
1/2 cup milk (optional use buttermilk)
2 large eggs
1 16 oz can imitation abalone (actually giant calamari, available at most grocery stores in the ethnic food aisle) or 2 calamari steaks cut into ½” squares

To prepare:

Combine the dry ingredients together in a large bowl and mix well with a whisk or fork. Add the corn, eggs, calamari and milk and whisk together until well blended. The mixture should be very thick but drop off of a spoon easily. Set batter aside at least 30 minutes in the refrigerator.

Heat a deep fryer or a large skillet with 2-3″ of oil to approximately 360 degrees and drop batter by the tablespoonful into the hot oil (be careful it may spatter) and deep fry in small batches until golden brown. Drain excess oil on paper towels or brown paper and serve hot alongside cocktail sauce or tartar sauce and lemon juice.