Halloween Food Day 26: Scary Squid Curry in a Cauldron

Curries are always great, but a squid curry is a special occasion sort of thing and it looks right at home in a witch’s cauldron for Halloween.

I have never bought squid before, but I have eaten fried calamari at restaurants.  It’s hard to find reasonable priced seafood this far inland, with the exception of things like shrimp, salmon, and tilapia.  We found a 3 pound box of frozen squid at our local Safeway for only $7.99, so we got to try cooking something new and exciting.  And we got to clean it, which was a new kitchen adventure.

This curry recipe is slightly adapted from Madhur Jaffrey’s recipe in Quick and Easy Indian Cooking.

•2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
•1 teaspoon yellow mustard seeds

•1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
•1/2 teaspoon turmeric
•1 teaspoon cumin
•1 teaspoon coriander
•1 teaspoon salt
•1/2 teaspoon pepper
•1 teaspoon grainy mustard
•1 onion, sliced
•4 cloves garlic, chopped
•2 inch piece ginger, chopped
•4-5 roma tomatoes, chopped- or a can of diced tomatoes, drained
•1 10 oz box frozen spinach, thawed and drained
•1 1/2 pounds cleaned and sliced squid- some places apparently sell bags of this already cleaned and sliced
•1 can coconut milk
•1 teaspoon garam masala

First, clean the squid if yours isn’t already cleaned.  Run each tentacle piece under cool running water and pull out the insides.  There is also a long, clear cartilage piece.  Be sure you remove that.

Slice the tentacles.  For the small pieces that are a head, you need to cut right below the eye (or whatever it is).  Don’t puncture it.  You will end up with ink squirted on your towels and cabinets.  Throw the heads away.  You will be left with this:
Once this step is done, set your squid aside and start on the curry.
Heat the vegetable oil in a skillet over medium high heat.  Add the mustard seeds and cover.  They will pop in a minute or so.  Mix the cayenne pepper, turmeric, cumin, coriander, salt, pepper, and grainy mustard together in a small bowl.  Add to the skillet and cook for about 30 seconds.  Add the garlic, ginger, and onions.  Cook until the onions are slightly tender.  Add the spinach and tomatoes.  Cook until the tomatoes start to get tender.  Add the coconut milk and bring to a simmer.  Stir in the squid and cook until just opaque.  It will only take a couple minutes.  Stir in the garam masala and serve over rice.

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