Crispy squid with spaghetti squash

Rob Rees transforms the humble squid into a sensational fusion dish, offering a fascinating mix of flavours and textures
Crispy squid with spaghetti squash
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time: 50 minutes
  • Prep Time: 45 minutes plus 5 mins cooling
  • Effort: medium


For the crispy squid

  • 250 g squid, cleaned and trimmed
  • 60 g plain flour
  • 2 tsp cajun seasoning
  • 1 pinches paprika
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 red chillies, roughly chopped
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 butter, knob

For the spaghetti squash

  • 1 kg spaghetti squash
  • 60 g butter
  • 1 small bunch of coriander, chopped
  • 60 g pickled ginger
  • 1 tbsp clear honey
  • 1 tsp freshly grated nutmeg

For the dressing

  • 150 ml olive oil
  • 1 tsp grain mustard
  • 0.5 tsp fish paste
  • 30 ml balsamic vinegar
  • 1 limes, zest
  • 1 lemons, zest
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 plum tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • 1 pinches mustard cress, for garnish

For the relish

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tsp cumin seeds
  • cardamom pods
  • 1 onions, finely sliced
  • 125 g caster sugar
  • 150 ml mirin
  • 2 tbsp chopped parsley


1. First prepare the relish. Heat the olive oil in a saucepan. Add the cumin seeds and cardamom pod and gently fry for a few moments to release the flavour. Next add the onions and fry very gently until soft. 2. Add the caster sugar and stir till golden brown. Add the mirin and reduce gently till completely absorbed by the onion. Turn off the heat and mix in the chopped parsley. This can be made in advance and served cold or hot. 3. Next, prepare the spaghetti squash. Place the squash in a large saucepan or casserole dish and cover with water. Boil the squash till tender. This can take up to 35 minutes for an average sized squash. Cool slightly in the water for five minutes. 4. Cut lengthways, scooping out the pips with a spoon. Using a fork, flake the flesh away from the skin. You will see it comes off like spaghetti strings. Place the spaghetti squash in a bowl and gently mix in the remaining ingredients. This can be reheated when required or used immediately. 5. To cook the squid, remove the tentacles from the squid and reserve them. Cut the remaining squid tubes in half and lightly score the flesh in a criss-cross fashion. 6. Mix together the flour, Cajun spice and paprika. Lightly coat the squid tubes and tentacles in the flour mixture. 7. Heat the olive oil in a frying pan. Add the chillies and garlic to the oil and fry, stirring, for 10-15 seconds, then add the butter. 8. Once the butter is golden and nutty add in the squid tubes and tentacles and fry gently on a medium heat for two minutes till golden and crisp. Remove and drain on kitchen paper. 9. Meanwhile, make the dressing. Whisk together the olive oil mustard, wasabi paste, balsamic vinegar, lime zest, lemon zest Worcestershire sauce and tomato. 10. To serve, place the squash in the centre of a serving plate and the crispy squid tubes on top. Top with some onion relish and garnish with mustard cress.

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