|Our Grilled Seafood Recipe for Squid and Mussels|
Over the past several weeks, my good friends at SmokinLicious® Gourmet Wood Products have allowed me to make their Tips & Techniques blog platform “my home away from culinary home” to highlight the cooking with wood style. I hope you’ve enjoyed the articles as much as I’ve enjoyed writing them. Before I begin an extended hiatus overseas, as my thanks, I thought I’d leave you with a pretty easy and flavorful recipe that showcases all the virtues of wood grilling with a couple of my favorite seafood- squid and mussels. The cooking style is one that is very popular in the Mediterranean region. Give it a try and let us know how it fared!
Let’s start out with squid or “calamari” as my Italian friends remind me. Whether it’s squid or calamari, it’s got to be fresh! Prepare first by thawing and rinsing thoroughly with cold water. Drizzle with a good quality of EVOO.
Grilling the SquidGrill over the hottest part of the wood fire, cover to get a shot of wood smoke flavor. It’s important to not overcook the calamari. If your grill is really hot (and it should be) cook just long enough to get a grill sear mark (30-40 seconds per side) Remove immediately when ready. Drizzle again with EVOO, season with salt and pepper. Spritz with a squeezed fresh quartered lemon section and garnish with a sprig of fresh parsley. Plate and serve right off the grill!
Next, grilling the mussels in the shell! Rinse the shelled mussels with cold water. Remove the beard with a quick, firm yank. Working in batches, place shelled mussels directly on grill grate over the hottest part of the wood fire. When shells just begin to open, cover to allow for a wood smoke infusion. After a minute, uncover and remove with tongs. Make sure you discard any unopened mussels. Quickly but carefully, remove the mussel meat from the opened shells with a fork or spoon and collect the meat in a mixing bowl.
After shelling out the mussels, drizzle with a good amount of EVOO (1/8 cup), season with salt and pepper and a hefty spritz of a squeezed whole fresh lemon. Plate and serve right away. For a flavor option, if desired, before grilling the mussels, prepare a mixture of clarified butter (about 2 tablespoons per 1 dozen mussels) with equal amounts (1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon) of finely chopped garlic, oregano, and parsley. Season the grilled mussel meat with the mixture, plate and serve with wedges of fresh lemons.
I hope you enjoy these recipes. Keep on cooking with wood! Bon Appetite!