These Deep-fried Squid Blossoms take about 30 seconds to prepare, 30 seconds to cook, and are a delicious appetizer, or as a snack with beer.
In my recently posted recipe for Beef Stuffed Baby Squid, only the ‘tube’ or body sections of the squid were used. I mentioned that if the squid being used were purchases with the arms and tentacles still attached, they should be removed and saved for a later use. The little appetizer dish pictured above is one such use, and one of my favorites.
By the way, I specifically refer to both ‘arms and tentacles’ in the presiding paragraph, because that is anatomically correct when talking about this particular sea-creature. People often refer to the entire group as being ‘tentacles, or ‘arms’, but there are actually only two tentacles and six ‘arms’.
The tentacles are visibly longer than the other appendages and are used for grabbing prey. If you are preparing whole squid for use, you will see that the appendages are joined together in a ring around the mouth parts and you can slice the whole assembly away from the rest of the head section once this is pulled away from the body.
Many times, I have ordered squid dishes in restaurants that consisted of the tentacles and arms only. Mostly, these are the large type, and often come battered, as separate pieces, before being deep-fried. When I buy very tiny squid (which have been the only sort available up in these parts of late), I like to keep the whole tentacle and arm ‘assembly’ in one piece and deep fry them without batter. The effect, once the central ring with the attached appendages hits the oil, is to make them curl into shapes that remind me a little of flower blossoms.
Anyway, if you are cleaning tiny squid, or else have purchased them with the whole tentacle section packed separately, you can fry them up in about thirty seconds or so (with or without a light dusting of cornstarch) and serve the Deep-fried Squid Blossoms piping hot as a lovely little appetizer. You can provide a dip of your choice, if you like, or else dust them with, say, chili flakes, or lemon-pepper, but they are best with nothing more than a quick squeeze of lemon juice.