Wednesday, 26 January 2011

Squid, Fregola & Cavalo Nero Stew

There's something quite appealing about cooking green vegetables long and slowly, past the point of crisp and crunchy and into the arena of a slight slime and silkiness. I don't do it often enough, but this squid, fregola and cavalo nero stew begged for it.

Fregola is a Sardinian pasta made of semolina dough and rolled into small balls. I first had it at Vinoteca and have been itching to use it ever since. Much like at Vinoteca, it went into a fishy stew. Squid was scored so that it curled up in the heat and slow cooked with red wine, tomatoes and hot smoked paprika. Diced bacon gave a further undertone of smoke, with essential porcine flavours complementing the cephalod. Parsley added at the last minute and a squeeze of lemon on serving was all it needed to properly bring out the flavours.

Squid, Fregola & Cavalo Nero Stew

Serves 2

2 medium sized squid
1 onion
3 cloves of garlic
1 tsp hot smoked paprika
1 glass of red wine
A pinch of chilli flakes
1 stick of celery
2 rashers of smoked streaky bacon
1 tin of peeled plum tomatoes
A handful of peas
100gr fregola
A few leaves of cavalo nero
A handful of parsley
Half an unwaxed lemon

Clean the squid and score it in a diamond pattern, slicing the body into 3. Fry the onion and the garlic in a little oil until softened and add the celery, finely diced.

Add the bacon, diced and fry for a good 5 or so minutes. Add the chilli flakes, hot smoked paprika and the squid, giving it a good stir to coat it all. Add the glass of red wine and simmer until reduced by half. Add the tin of tomatoes and the cavalo nero, chopped roughly and simmer slowly for 40 minutes, adding more water if it looks dry.

Boil a pan of water and add the fregola, simmer for 5 minutes. Drain, rinse and add to the squid. Add the peas and simmer for a further 10 mins, a little more if the pasta is still hard - the stew should be quite soupy so add more water if it's looking too thick.

To serve, chop the parsley and throw over. Zest the lemon into the stew and serve with the juice squeezed on top.


Food For Think said...

If ever a picture of a stew could make my mouth water, this is it!!!

Never thought of adding Squid to a stew before - I cooked a lot with Squid in Australia but it was mostly battered!

This is definitely a recipe that I'd like to recreate. Have never tried Fregola but looks like my kinda thing.

Anonymous said...

awesome- will actually try and cook tonight as it looks so good!

Anonymous said...

3 of my favourite foods. I first had fregola at Vinoteca too. When autumn/winter comes here and the cavalo nero starts to come from mum's garden I'm going to dig out your recipe, it looks yum.

Hanna @ Swedish Meatball said...

Sounds great! I've never come across Fregola - where did you find yours?

Greedy Diva said...

This looks like a definite option for Sunday night. I think that I Camisa on Old Compton st sell fregola (and a range of other wonderful Italian things).

The Grubworm said...

That looks well tasty. I like the use of red wine in a seafood dish, it's not something I've come across much, but when I have it really works.

Also, like Swedish Meatball said above, where did you get your fregola from?

Unknown said...

This looks, sounds, and I bet tastes divine... Killer recipe!

Alexander Woods said...

Awesome recipe for squid! It can be all to easy to struggle for inspiration sometimes for such delicious and rewarding seafood.

Helen said...

This looks yummers. I love it when squid is cut like that so it curls up and you can stuff it all in your face really easily. I've really been craving the dark green veg too recently; reckon it's to do with winter or the weather or um, something.

S said...

i like the idea of cooking greens to death- we do it in Pakistan all the time, esp with spinach and mutton curry, which i adore. love your dish- lots of different flavours and textures coming together here. Buon Weekend. x shayma

Jonathan said...

Nice. I've got a big soft spot for fregola - especially when cooked with sea food and strong flavours like chilli. Looks delicious.

Keri said...

This is amazing. So glad I came back for a second look.

Congrats on your blog.