Greek Kalamari, stuffed

Lent is the Christian observance of the liturgical year from Ash Wednesday to Holy Thursday.

The traditional purpose of Lent is the penitential preparation of the believer—through prayer, penance, repentance, almsgiving and self-denial. Its institutional purpose is heightened in the annual commemoration of Holy Week, marking the Death and Resurrection of Jesus, which recalls the events of the Passion of Christ on Good Friday, which then culminates in the celebration on Easter Sunday of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ.

During Lent, many of the faithful commit to fasting or giving up certain types of luxury as a form of penitence, such as dairy products, meat and every food that has blood.”

So, they usually confine only in pulses, pasta and seafood, like KALAMARI.

GREEK KALAMARI, STUFFED 

INGREDIENTS:

 1½ kg squid (kalamari)medium or small size

1 (or 2 according to taste) onion

120 gr risotto rice

50 ml white wine (eg Greek Retsina wine)

2 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped

60 ml Greek Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO)

Freshly ground pepper and salt to taste

 

THE SAUCE:

1 tablespoon tomato paste diluted in 2 tablespoons water

1 onion grated

50 ml white wine

2 garlic cloves, chopped

a handful of fresh basil

400 ml fresh tomatoes, chopped

1/2 lemon, the juice

60 ml Extra Virgin Olive Oil

a pinch of sugar

Salt & freshly ground pepper

 

HOW TO:

For the sauce:

Take a frying pan, pour in the olive oil and in medium heat saute the onion

until it becomes transparent. Be careful not to burn it.

Then add the garlic and saute for one more minute.

Then distinguish with the wine.

Leave it to evaporate and then add the lemon juice, the tomatoes, the tomato paste, salt, pepper and sugar.

Simmer for another 20 minutes. 5 minutes before the end, add the fresh basil.

 For the squid:

Remove the head with the tentacles from the body. Then take a sharp knife and remove the ink,

the eye and mouth and discard them.

Make sure you empty the body completely and wash it well.

In this point you can rub the tentacles and empty tubes with salt.

This way the outer membrane will be removed completely.

To be honest, I never do it but some people can’t stand the membrane, so it’s up to you.

Chop the tentacles and the onion.

*If you want to avoid all this trouble, just buy the already cleaned kalamari.

Take a frying pan and saute the onion in the olive oil for 3 minutes (until transparent).

Add the tentacles and fry them until all the juices have evaporated.

Then add the rice, the parsley, salt and pepper and cook the mix for about one minute.

Then extinguish with the wine and stir until it is evaporated.

Add one or two tbsp of your previously prepared sauce so it’s not too dry.

Let it slow cook for 5 minutes. 

When ready, with a teaspoon, you stuff the kalamari with your mixture and secure the tube with a toothpick.

Put the stuffed kalamari in an oven dish and spread the sauce over them. If you want you can sprinkle with some more fresh parsley.

Cover the oven dish with a lid or tin foil.

Bake in a pre-heated oven at 160 oC for about one hour or until the kalamari is tender enough. From time to time you should inspect your kalamari to make sure there is enough water. If not, add a little.

 Serve alone or with white rice. Enjoy!

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