02 May 2013

Vietnamese Stuffed Squid

Oh my goodness! These cute little squid were so delicious, seriously. I know it seems like a bit of faffing around but honestly, the final result is so worth it. If you’re a bit squeamish about cleaning out squid, maybe you could sweet talk your fishmonger into doing it for you or you may even be able to buy the hoods already cleaned out but in my experience, this option only seems to be available with the larger squid and you definitely need the small to medium sized ones for this recipe. You can even substitute 8 baby ones instead if you want a more bite sized portion. The stuffing is full of those wonderful, distinctive Asian flavours and is truly delectable wrapped in its tender little squid jacket. As the stuffing is already cooked, the squid themselves only need a couple of minutes on all sides until they’re golden, so make sure you don’t over cook them into rubbery oblivion. Served with a crunchy salad and that fiery dipping sauce, this was an absolute winner.

Vietnamese Stuffed Squid
Adapted recipe from eatout

4 small squid, cleaned, tentacles removed and chopped
4 spring onions, finely diced
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 red chilli, finely chopped
1 tblspn rice vinegar
200g pork mince
¼ tspn white pepper
75ml chicken stock
½ tblspn fish sauce
½ tspn palm sugar
handful of coriander leaves, chopped

Nuoc Cham Sauce:
1 tblspn white sugar
juice of 1 lime
1 red chilli, minced
1 garlic clove, crushed
3 tblspns water
½ tblspn rice vinegar
1½ tblspns fish sauce

For the stuffing, heat up a frying pan and pour in 1 tablespoon of nut or vegetable oil. Toss in the spring onions, garlic and chilli and cook for 2-3 minutes. Now pour in the rice vinegar and let it reduce until nearly evaporated. Tip in the pork mince and pepper and fry, using a spoon to break up the mince. Add chicken stock, fish sauce and palm sugar and simmer for 5 minutes or until most of the liquid has evaporated. Toss through the chopped tentacles and coriander and cook for a couple more minutes. Have a little taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary by adding a little more fish sauce and pepper if needed. Leave to cool.

While that’s cooling, make your dipping sauce by dissolving the sugar in the lime juice then add the rest of the ingredients. This will keep for a few days in the fridge.

Spoon the stuffing mixture into each of the squid tubes, taking care not to overstuff as it can explode! Secure the opening with a toothpick. Using the point of a sharp knife or skewer, pierce a tiny hole in each side of the squid to release any steam build up while it cooks. This also allows some of the juices to escape and creates a glaze to spoon over.

Heat a tablespoon of oil in a frying pan on a medium heat and add the squid, fry for a couple of minutes before turning and browning on all sides. When they’re lovely and golden, take them out of the pan and remove the toothpicks before slicing and serving with the dipping sauce and a little of the cooking juices spooned over. Serves 2.
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T. Alex said...

These stuffed squid sound delicious. I love the tastes of Asia. My aunt was Korean and her food was always spectacular. I will definitely be making these one day soon.

Julie said...

Thanks for your kind comment. I just love those gorgeous Asian flavours too.

afracooking said...

I love eating squid! The texture and flavour are just so unique! And this recipe is amazing! My mouth is watering just reading the list of ingredients!

Julie said...

This is a lovely way to serve squid, really different and tasty. Hope you can try it soon!

Hope Johnson said...

Making this tonight! Fingers crossed it goes well for me...first time cooking with squid!

Julie said...

Good luck Hope! I'm sure it will turn out fine, just make sure you don't overcook the squid. Squid can be tricky … it's either best cooked very quickly on a high heat as in this recipe or braised in a sauce for a long time on a low heat, there doesn't seem to be any in between!

Beverley said...

I made this tonight using squid we caught today - it was amazing! So pleased I found your recipe - definitely a keeper!

Julie said...

Wow! Home caught squid, doesn't get any fresher than that. Glad to hear that you loved the recipe.