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Any good recipes using canned calamari?

I bought a few cans of the small sized calamari, but I have never used them. I was thinking of a cold calamari salad, but figured I would try here first so I don't waste the cans.

Or can I drain them, bread them and use a fried calamari?

Any recipes that are proven I would love to have! Thanks!

Happy New Year!

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  1. Are they already cooked in the can? If they are, I might be reluctant to do fried calamari because they might come out tough.

    A cold calamari salad sounds like a good idea, or maybe if you add them at the last minute to a pot of tomato sauce and serve with pasta.

    1. No proven recipes for canned, but I would be afraid they would be tough from the canning process. Sorry I've only used fresh or frozen in the past, never even knew they made canned. I would try a marinaded fish salad over frying them, maybe it will soften them up? And maybe add some scunguilli (which I do buy canned) and/or shrimp too. Or else calamari in hot sauce over spaghetti, if you simmer them long enough it might soften them up.
      Of course I don't knew that they will be tough, just guessing.

      I'm going to watch for ideas and see if I can apply any of them to a can of "abalone-like shellfish" that I have languishing in my pantry. I'd really like to get it out of there but doubt any food pantry would appreciate my generosity ;-)

        1. re: C. Hamster

          Glad I'm not the only one, thought I'd seen it all!

        2. Sorry, but my immediate reaction to almost any canned fish product is CAT FOOD! Then I started to cogitate. I enjoy canned smoked oysters. Canned clams and cream cheese make great dips. And squid is a mollusc without the shell, so let me regroup.

          If rings, skewer, sesame sea oil, quick grill.

          A great addition to paella.

          Same to any seafood chowder. Add at end so they don't toughen.

          If you have shells, calamari casino or calamari rockefeller.

          Now if I can find it, I am going to buy a can and experiment. Trouble is, a market here just started importing large squid from Peru. So I already have a 5 pound squid in the freezer.

          1. I've never seen canned calamari, but have used canned scungilli. I simply reheat it gently in pasta sauce & serve over spaghetti.

            1. Canned squid has already been cooked to hell and back, so its soft and stringy. Not enough consistency to be worth frying. Could be used in a salad, but it won't be your best seafood salad. I think your best bet would be to toss in a quick pasta sauce...the kind of thing you might want to do mid-week, when you just want to make something quick and easy from what you already have in the house.

                1. re: Angelina

                  Calamari or Seafood Salad.....or mixed with tomatoes/sauce over Pasta.

                  btw....for future reference, you could probably purchase a 3.5 pound block in the freezer section for about $6-7....with or without, tentacles....much more versatile and better value.

                  1. re: Angelina

                    Oh yeah, now that I see the can I know it. Use it for something mentioned here like the pasta sauce, and next time at least buy some local frozen tubes and/or tentacles for comparison sake!

                    1. re: Angelina

                      La Monica brand is the brand of canned scungilli I've enjoyed for many years (although very few supermarkets carry it anymore).

                      Quality for a canned product should be fine, but I again strongly suggest adding it to a nicely-seasoned tomato sauce & serving it over pasta.

                      I fondly remember my mom fixing the La Monica canned scungilli that way for me for lunch or an early dinner while growing up.

                    2. Puree them and make "calamari balls"

                      1. Maybe in a white pasta sauce? Similar to a white clam--just sub in the calamari?

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: BellaBoston

                          But spicy red sauce is soooo good, I'm temped to make it with my abalone now.

                        2. You could make a cheeseless "risotto" with fish bouillion and stir in the drained canned calimari in the last 2-3 minutes in lieu of cheese.

                          I would also add plenty of finely chopped fresh parsely and squeeze of lemon at the very end to brighten the dish, and plenty of fresh ground pepper.

                          1. I would just fold some (drained) into a spicy fried rice, just to let it heat through.