Skordalia with Fried Calamari
- 1 large Yukon Gold potato, peeled and cut into 1-inch dice
- 2 thick slices stale, homemade-style white bread
- 6 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
- 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- Fried Calamari, recipe follows
- Fried Calamari:
- 1 pound fresh cleaned squid, or thawed if frozen
- 2 cups buttermilk
- 1/3 cup Essence, recipe follows
- 1 cup masa harina
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 6 cups vegetable oil, for frying
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan
- Essence (Emeril's Creole Seasoning):
- 2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
- 2 tablespoons salt
- 2 tablespoons garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon black pepper
- 1 tablespoon onion powder
- 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
- 1 tablespoon dried leaf oregano
- 1 tablespoon dried thyme
Place the potato in a small saucepan and cover with lightly salted water by 1/2-inch. Bring to a boil and cook until tender. Drain and let cool.
Soak the bread well in water. Squeeze out the water and tear the bread into small pieces to form large wet bread crumbs. Set aside.
Place the garlic in a bowl and mix with the salt to form a paste. Add the potatoes, vinegar, and lemon juice, and mash well. Add the wet bread crumbs and mash to make a smooth paste. Gradually add the oil, mixing constantly, to form a thick sauce. Continue to beat until the sauce is thick enough to hold its shape. Adjust seasoning, to taste, with salt and lemon juice. Spoon into a decorative bowl and serve at room temperature with Fried Calamari.Fried Calamari:
Cut the body sacs of the squid into 1-inch rings and trim the tentacles as necessary.
In a mixing bowl, combine the buttermilk with 1/4 cup Essence. Place the squid pieces in the buttermilk mixture and allow to marinate for 30 minutes. Combine the masa harina and flour with the remaining 2 tablespoons of Essence in a clean mixing bowl or baking dish.
Heat the oil in a medium, heavy stockpot to 350 degrees F.
Dredge the marinated squid in the flour mixture and shake the pieces in a strainer to remove any excess. Carefully slip the squid into the hot oil, and cook, turning occasionally, until evenly cooked and golden, about 2 to 3 minutes. With a slotted spoon remove from the pot and drain on paper towels.
Place the calamari on a platter and season, to taste, with salt and pepper. Serve immediately with the Skordalia.Essence (Emeril's Creole Seasoning):
Combine all ingredients thoroughly and store in an airtight jar or container.
Yield: about 2/3 cup
Recipe from "New New Orleans Cooking", by Emeril Lagasse and Jessie Tirsch. Published by William and Morrow, 1993