Italian Fried Calamari

Italian Fried Calamari

Holidays pass but we are left with many beautiful memories, including culinary. It's food with the aroma and taste of the sea, which you can prepare at home at any time during the year. Fried calamari or calamari fritti are our favorites on holidays at the sea. We like to eat them in this particular way - fried fresh, not thawed nor rings cooked in unsafe looking coating.

I'm showing you below not only the frying method, but also how to clean fresh squid bought from safe sources. There is nothing complicated, just be careful that when you buy the squid, it smells nicely of sea, not of rotten fish.

This recipe follows the Italian recipe, which I think is the simplest and most correct, because it brings out the wonderful taste of seafood. You can also fry other favorite seafood in this way - shrimp, clam meat, small fish etc. Serve plain with salt and a few drops of lemon juice, I assure you they are absolutely delicious, they are never enough for us ...


Fresh squid
1 kg
take whole squids, medium/large sized, with tentacles
White flour
300 g
I prefer to use semolina durum wheat flour, Italian, for a more obvious crunch
Peanut oil
1 l
or choose any other frying oil with high smoke point you prefer
0.5 tsp
0.5 pieces

Step by step

Step 1

I found medium-sized squid. This is a whole squid, before being cleaned.

It has a tube-shaped front body with two small fins and short tentacles at the back.

Italian Fried Calamari - Step 1
Step 2

Gently pull the area with tentacles and break it away from the body. Hold the tube of the squid in the other hand.

Italian Fried Calamari - Step 2
Step 3

Put the tentacles aside for now. Use your fingers to remove the inside and also a kind of glassy straw.

You can cut the tube lengthwise, to remove the inside more easily, but that way you won't have those classic squid rings. It's only a visual thing, though, so do what works best for you.

Italian Fried Calamari - Step 3
Step 4

Then remove that thin red-brown skin from the body with a knife.

I've seen versions where this is not cleaned, but probably for smaller squids, where it's not yet very thick.

Italian Fried Calamari - Step 4
Step 5

Now we are dealing with the tentacles. Cut the end with the eyes.

Italian Fried Calamari - Step 5
Step 6

Turn over and notice there is still left a small bone ring right in the middle of the tentacles. Press lightly with your finger and it will come out by itself, discard.

Italian Fried Calamari - Step 6
Step 7

You can divide into pieces of two or three tentacles each, if they are not too small and thin.

Italian Fried Calamari - Step 7
Step 8

When you finish cleaning all the squids, rinse the tubes and the tentacles properly, in and out, under cold water.

Italian Fried Calamari - Step 8
Step 9

Allow to drain in a colander.

Italian Fried Calamari - Step 9
Step 10

Then cut each tube into rings about one cm wide.

What you see in the picture is a cleaned, washed and portioned squid, ready to be fried.

Italian Fried Calamari - Step 10
Step 11

Pat dry all pieces of squid with paper towel or napkins. This way, we will remove the excess water for a crispier fried squid.

Italian Fried Calamari - Step 11
Step 12

Pour the oil into a heavy-bottomed pan, a Dutch oven or even a saucepan with high sides.

Heat the oil as much as possible. A thermometer should be able to show over 190 degrees C. In this temperature, seafood browns quickly, without changing its taste and texture. For this reason, I recommend for frying oil with the highest smoke point.

Italian Fried Calamari - Step 12
Step 13

Then quickly pass through flour a portion of squid (as much as can fit in the pan in one round).

Italian Fried Calamari - Step 13
Step 14

To get rid of the excess flour, place the squid in a sieve and shake well.

Italian Fried Calamari - Step 14
Step 15

Quickly toss the squid into the hot oil, gently mix and cook for two or three minutes.

Italian Fried Calamari - Step 15
Step 16

Then remove and place on paper towel/napkins to absorb excess oil.

Fry another round of squid with flour. Continue to do so until you finish it all.

Italian Fried Calamari - Step 16
Step 17

Don't forget to sprinkle with salt on top.

Italian Fried Calamari - Step 17
Step 18

Serve warm, with a drizzle of lemon juice.


Italian Fried Calamari - Step 18
Quantity: 1 kg
Prep time: 20 min
Difficulty: intermediate
Ready in: 30 min
Publish date:

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