Monday, August 20, 2007

Something in this Room Sucks More than the Squid's Arm

I received some food for a gift the other day. I cooked and ate most of the other stuff immediately, but there still lingered a bulging pack of 3 fat squid taunting me from the bottom of the bag. Each squid was dead and white, and surprisingly big. I've never really looked at one up close before, but they are bizarre mutant alien sea creatures. I can only imagine what it would be like to encounter a live Giant Squid in some dark crevice in the depths of the Pacific.

So, knowing that raw squid isn't going to get better with age, I grabbed my knife and got to work. I started making cuts when it occurred to me that I have no idea how to clean a squid. By this point, I've punctured some organ or other bit of random viscera and there's a mixture of what appears to be ink and thick cioppino spilling out of the squid's mantle into my sink. It doesn't smell good. I should have googled this. Now I start frantically cutting off all the bits that look like organs and shoving them in a plastic bag trying to quarantine anything that will smell like a thousand fetid corpses if exposed to Japanese heat and humidity. Then I spent a good ten minutes mopping exploded squid entrails out of the corners and crevices of my sink. At this point I have a flap of thick, but gutless squid flesh. I think I've cleaned all the offensive matter out of my sink, but I can tell you for sure tomorrow after I come home from work.

I threw the supposedly edible chunk of flesh into a hot pan of peanut oil and pepper. The squid went from rubbery to rubbery. Now my apartment smelled like squid and hot peanut oil, and the texture was still about the same as a Birkenstock. Not a good sign. I ate a couple pieces anyway, and didn't die. So far so good. Unfortunately, it didn't taste very good.

So if you're going to try cooking squid, at least learn from my mistakes and read up on it:

http://www.cooks.com/rec/story/168/

7 comments:

d said...

The Warren had a kalamari burger on the menu yesterday. I considered ordering it until I remembered your descriptive writing on the subject. Ugh.

Here is a recipe using that lovely ink:
http://www.gennarino.org/neroseppia.htm

Lisa said...

That is disturbing and gross. It is also exactly why the hypocritical carnivore in me can eat meat and seafood but has great amounts of trouble starting to prepare it for eating from the point where it still has all its organs and appendages intact.

d said...

I just had a thought (uh oh); maybe you were chopping up Kang and Kodos?!

-M said...

Stick with calamari steaks which have been pulverized and are incredibly tender -- although, who doesn't love the calamari deep fried at Alexis with Tzasiki sauce?! I've never tried to cook a whole squid before and I have to say you've thrown down the guantlet! Hmmmmm............I do think LARGE AMOUNTS of HOT OIL will help just about any preparation.......... (breaded heavily and fried -- every thing will taste like a delicious onion ring!) AND then dip in some decadent sauce........

-M said...

Stick with calamari steaks which have been pulverized and are incredibly tender -- although, who doesn't love the calamari deep fried at Alexis with Tzasiki sauce?! I've never tried to cook a whole squid before and I have to say you've thrown down the guantlet! Hmmmmm............I do think LARGE AMOUNTS of HOT OIL will help just about any preparation.......... (breaded heavily and fried -- every thing will taste like a delicious onion ring!) AND then dip in some decadent sauce........

Vanessa said...

Hi Nate!!

Tom said...

Than, where did you go? Vacation? Mountain Biking? Or, did the squid doing something terrible to you? C'mon man, we need our unanimation fix!