Italian Regional Recipes Secondi Piatti: Meat, Fish, Eggs, Cheese

Crispy Prawns and Squids

From the North to the South of Italy, fried prawns and squids cannot be beaten. No batter, no eggs, just durum wheat semolina flour which gives it a special crunchiness. Corn flour will give a nice result as well.

We soaked squids in milk for a couple of hours before frying them because milk softens them. Just try it and see if this is ok for you as well.

As you know, in Italy the Extra Virgin Olive Oil is a must also for frying and we recommend it, although another excellent oil for frying is certainly peanut seeds oil. The choice is yours.


Serves 4, Preparation 15 mins + 2 hrs resting in the fridge, Cooking 10-15 mins

  • 4 medium-sized fresh squids or 300 g frozen squids
  • 25-30 fresh king prawns or 400 g frozen king prawns
  • Durum wheat semolina’s flour – alternative corn flour, to taste
  • Whole Milk, to taste
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil or Peanut Seeds oil for deep-frying, 1 lt
  • Salt to taste

Method

If you use fresh squids:

Separate the tentacles from the rest of the body.
Remove the inner cartilaginous pen.
Empty the bag of any remaining entrails and the ink pocket, remove the internal membranes, rinse the squid. Use a knife to cut off the fins and peel off the skin. Clean the clump of tentacles from the head and the guts that have remained attached. Press the tentacles in the middle to remove the tooth. Cut off the head at eye level. Rinse the head and the pouch.

Soak the squids into milk for at least 2 hours stored in the fridge. You can do this also with the ready-made frozen ones – once thawed, of course.

Drain the milk off the squids, beat them lightly with a meat pounder, dry and slice them into rings.

Put enough semolina’s flour in a bowl to cover evenly both prawns and squid rings.

Tip: otherwise, place squid rings in a plastic bag with a few tablespoons of semolina’s flour and shake well until they are evenly covered. Do the same with the prawns, taking care not to break them.

Shake off gently the excess flour from both the prawns and the squid with a sieve.

Heat the Evoo.

Tip: it is important to fry squid rings quickly once floured because if you put them aside for too long the flour will get moist.

Plunge the squid rings in the hot oil and fry them for max 2 mins. Place them on a plate lined with kitchen paper. Do the same with the prawns now.

Tip: do not cover them with more paper towels nor a plate, otherwise the heat will have a sauna effect and the fried shrimps will go soggy.

Season with salt and serve them hot.

What to do with the milk I’ve used to soak squids?

You can make an omelette or a seafood mousse to pair with your fried squids and prawns.

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