Calamari is always that one dish that when someone orders it in a restaurant, I can't help get food envy. I'd happily sit next to a friend wolfing down chunks of bread, cake or pasta, but fried calamari just always looks so good.
So when I found a bag of frozen, prepared squid in Tesco, I really wanted to have a go at making it myself. As I'm trying to avoid a lot of complex carbs and keep my diet super simple, I thought almond flour would be just the ticket. And it turned out really well.
Squid is one of my favourite forms of seafood - second only to octopus, and maybe on a par with prawns! It is low calorie and made up of around 70 per cent protein - which means I can eat more of it to hit my macros! It's low in fat and even though seafood can be more expensive than meat, I love it as an occasional treat.
I paired the squid with sweet potato fries, which I am absolutely addicted to at the moment! They are just so much better and more tasty than normal fries, and because sweet potato is low GI they're much better for you too.These deliciously orange potatoes are a great source of vitamin A (linked to eye health, cancer prevention and anti-ageing); they're packed with vitamin B6 (which encourages heart health) and they also have a high quantity of immune-boosting vitamin C.
So if you want a quick, healthy dinner which feels naughty, tastes great and is so simple to make, almond dusted calamari is for you. Plus it's also dairy free and wheat free too!
Almond dusted calamari and sweet potato fries
For the calamari
2.5 tablespoons almond flour
1 tablespoon coconut oil
400g prepared squid (raw)
generous pinch of salt, black pepper and chilli powder
For the fries
3 medium sized sweet potatoes
½ tsp avocado oil
1 tsp paprika
pinch salt and chilli flakes
pinch garlic powder (optional)
- First you'll need to preheat the oven to 200'C and get the fries ready to rock and roll. Peel the potatoes and then cut them into thin strips - I prefer thin fries, but you can opt for chunkier wedges if you like.
- Pop the fries in a bowl with the oil, paprika, salt, chilli and garlic powder. Give them a good shake and mix it up, then pour onto a baking tray and pop into the oven. They will need approximately 25-30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, chop the squid into rings. Use the tentacles too if they're included - they are the best tasting bit!
- Add the squid rings/tentacles to a mixing bowl and add the almond flour, salt, pepper and chilli. Mix and make sure the squid is coated well.
- Heat the coconut oil in a pan, and when hot, add the squid. Cook for 1-2 mins on a high heat, and then turn to a medium heat for a further 2-3 mins. You may need to add a little more oil as coconut oil can burn off quicker.
- Tip the calamari onto two plates, add the fries on the side and demolish. Delicious, simple grub with minimal effort - just the ticket for a Friday night in.