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Buying squid

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Heya 'hounds,

I'm looking to grill some squid tonight. Of course fresh would be ideal, but since most seafood is frozen at some point, I'm flexi.

Where should I buy? Price isn't much of an issue, I'm more interested in quality. Thanks!

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  1. I bought some recently at the seafood section at Ralph's Fresh Fare. From China, previously frozen and already cleaned. I forget whether it was $3.99 or $4.99 a lb. It was fine.

    1. almost all of the squid you'll buy has been frozen. it's probably better that way since it starts to go off within 24 hours. you can always find good squid at 99 ranch, and i've been seeing little squid at mitsuwa. also, if you're grilling, try the little squid legs that are already skewered. those are terrific.

      5 Replies
      1. re: FED

        odd, the freezing thing, since squid is fished avidly off the coast of Santa Barbara. I wonder if Santa Monica Seafood has it fresh. I know they do sometimes.

        You have to call and ask
        310-393-5244

        1. re: Diana

          it's all global economics. most of the cleaned squid you find in the market was actually caught off southern california and shipped to china to be cleaned and processed before being shipped back. air freight is cheaper than human labor. from time to time, you will find some fresh local squid (never frozen) at asian groceries, but not often.

          that said, there is nothing magical about "never frozen." properly handled (quick frozen, slowly thawed), frozen squid is better than all but the freshest fresh.

          1. re: FED

            FED, a quick question, since you seem to be in the know:
            The fish served in high end sushi places, that supposedly is shipped fresh daily from Japan, is it really ? I mean, with all those FDA regulations requiring fish to be frozen at some point or other ?

            1. re: RicRios

              Based on the experiences of my old job I can say that it's true that fresh fish is shipped by air from Japan daily. It's usually packed on ice but not frozen. Some of it is actually still living, I've seen Octopus still moving around in the bags. The fish at the airport would usually go from plane to the owner in a few hours or less.

              1. re: RicRios

                sure, most of it is. tuna, though, is not. it goes off extremely quickly, so it is almost always deep-frozen. i don't know of any fda regs that require fish to be frozen ... it's mostly for ease of handling and transportation. and before you sneer at that, remember that if it wasn't for handling and transportation, we'd be eating pretty much nothing but sardines, mackerel and squid.

        2. sm seafood has it, even better is Anjin II at various farmer's markets, the freshest