On a stormy night a couple of weeks ago a friend and I ventured out to dinner at The Boat Shed, an iconic Nelson restaurant, perched on the edge of the harbour. We decided to Trust The Chef, and as we oooohed and aaaaahed and OMGd our way through the following six or seven dishes, my mind was somewhat relieved from worrying about the rain which was bucketing in through my dining room ceiling back home. A couple of hours in a "dry place" savouring some heavenly food was just the distraction I needed.
One dish that really delighted us both, and which has been on my mind ever since, was a zingy squid, chorizo and chilli salad. It reminded me a little of a seafood, fennel and lime salad from Ottolenghi The Cookbook that I'd had bookmarked for ages.
Since it's Pot Luck week this week at I Heart Cooking Clubs, it seemed like a good time to spend a little time with Ottolenghi and conjure up my own version of this salad, which is a little bit Ottolenghi and a little bit Boat Shed.
This made a great dish for a light lunch. It was quick and simple to put together, and is definitely a dish I will be making again. Had it been a nice sunny day, this would have been lovely to enjoy al fresco, but on a wintery Sunday warmed by the heat pump it still brought back memories of squid salads in the Greek islands.
Chorizo & Calamari Salad with Black Olives & Pomegranate Recipe
Inspired by The Boat Shed and Yotam Ottolenghi
Click here for a printable copy of this recipe
2 small fennel bulbs
generous handful of coriander
1x mild red chilli, deseeded & finely sliced
handful of black olives
extra virgin olive oil
freshly squeezed lemon juice
flaky sea salt
1x chorizo sausage, thinly sliced
400g (14 oz) cleaned calamari tubes
pomegranate seeds to finish
Trim the bases and tops off the fennel bulbs, reserving a few of the feathery fronds. Cut the fennel in half lengthwise, and then slice them as thinly as you can - a mandolin is the ideal tool if you have one - and place in a large bowl. Finely chop the reserved fennel fronds and add them to the bowl. Add the roughly chopped coriander, chilli and black olives. Drizzle over extra virgin olive oil and lemon juice to taste, and season with a little flaky sea salt, again to taste. Set aside.
Heat a little olive oil (you won't need much) in a small pan over medium heat, and saute the chorizo sausage until browned on both sides. Remove from heat.
Meanwhile, cut the calamari tubes into pieces about 5cm (2 inches) square, and score lightly with a sharp knife. Toss with a little olive oil and a generous pinch of flaky sea salt. Heat a chargrill pan over high heat (cast iron is perfect for the job) until smoking. Grill the calamari in small batches until just done - about 1 minute on each side. Remove from heat.
Add the calamari and chorizo to the salad. Toss until well combined and serve immediately, garnished with a sprinkling of pomegranate seeds.
If you would like to get to know Yotam Ottolenghi a little better or any one of our other IHCC chefs, then do go and visit my friends at I Heart Cooking Clubs and see what they've all cooked up for Pot Luck week ...
... or check out Ottolenghi The Cookbook and Ottolenghi's other great titles available from Amazon USA, Amazon UK or Fishpond NZ.
I'll also be sharing this post at See Ya In the Gumbo hosted by the lovely, and very amusing, Michelle at Ms. enPlace, at Souper (Soup, Salad & Sammie) Sundays hosted by my lovely friend Deb at Kahakai Kitchen, at Weekend Cooking hosted by Beth Fish Reads, and at Foodie Friday hosted by Designs by Gollam.
Was reading lots of Ottolenghi recipes today on the Guardian and totally inspired by his love of flavours, ingredients. This is a great example of his style. I almost ate in his Islington Restaurant but family emergency called me away, literally as I stepped through the door. Will be back I am sure.ReplyDelete
Julie, I find Ottolenghi so totally inspiring - when I open up his books or go to his Guardian page, I just get lost there for hours. He really makes me want to get in the kitchen and always makes me think about things in new and unexpected ways. What a shame you missed out on your Ottolenghi restaurant experience, though hope the emergency turned out not to be too dire. Eating at Ottolenghi would probably be my ultimate food dream.Delete
Chorizo and calamari are both favorites, but I have never thought of pairing them in my salads. Well, I should as it looks fantastic!ReplyDelete
Thanks, Angie. Chorizo and calamari are a great combo. Actually chorizo is really great with scallops too.Delete
Your fish plates are so cute! Hope the dining room ceiling has recovered.ReplyDelete
Thanks, Alicia. The fish plates were an absolute bargain I picked up in a clearance sale, and I love them. Well, at least the dining room ceiling has stopped leaking - just have to repair all the damage now.Delete
I love the fish dishes- and the salad looks amazing too.ReplyDelete
Thanks, Diane - they are my favourite dishes for serving seafood of any description, even if it is a little cliched :-)Delete
That sounds like a wonderful combination of ingredients. I've also never thought to pair chorizo with calamari but they would be delicious together!ReplyDelete
Thanks, Zosia. The chorizo and calamari really pair together well - both texturally and flavourwise - I'm sure you'd enjoy it.Delete
What a gorgeous salad and I am totally coveting your pretty fish plates! I love the combination of flavors you have going on here--with the pomegranate seeds a perfect touch. Thanks for sharing it with Souper Sundays this week. ;-)ReplyDelete
Thanks, Deb. I loved the pomegranate seeds for the finishing touch - it's typical Ottolenghi and I never would have thought of it, but it was just perfect.Delete
It sounds as if you shared a scrumptious and well-deserved meal at The Boat Shed. I love all the bright zippy flavors in this salad, Sue. And chorizo....a little bit of chorizo is like heaven in anything! Love the cute plates:)ReplyDelete
Thanks, Kim. Dinner at The Boat Shed was very special, and much needed at the time. You're totally right - a little bit of chorizo makes everything wonderful :-)Delete
yum, this looks so good. love chorizo and calamari together.. never would have thought to add pomegranate seeds. definitely something i need to try. love it!ReplyDelete
Thanks, Thalia - the pomegranate seeds, although not essential by any means to this dish - it would still be great without them - were definitely the crowning glory. Sheer Ottolenghi genius.Delete
I love how you combined inspiration from two chefs to make one fabulous recipe!ReplyDelete
Thanks, Joanne, and thanks for stopping by :-)Delete
Very impressive dish! Pomegranate is a unique addition to the seafood and chorizo!ReplyDelete
Thanks, Gwen. i love the "surprise" note that a sprinkling of pomegranate seeds brings to so many dishes. I always keep a stash of them in the freezer for using at times like this when pomegranates are out of season.Delete
What a great combination of flavors. This looks amazing.ReplyDelete
Thanks, Margaret :-)Delete
I have never cooked calamari. I order it every time I find it on the menu at my fave restaurant. You make me want to try.ReplyDelete
Thanks, Madonna. The trick with cooking calamari is making sure that you cook it either very hot and fast, or for a very long time - anywhere in between is guaranteed rubber bands. Another good trick is using frozen squid, as the freezing somehow tenderises it - weird but true.Delete
Such a delicious plate of salad, Sue! I love calamari, anyway it is done, and this salad looks really delicious! And I like your cute little fish plate.ReplyDelete
A delightful potluck choice!
Thanks, Joyce. I'm with you - I love calamari pretty much any which way, but most especially in bright, flavourful salads that make me think of summer holidays :-)Delete
You're so creative in your cooking! I love you pretty fish dishes that you used for serving this wonderful meal.ReplyDelete
I'm your newest follower :-)
Thank you so much, Kitty, and thank you for following - I'll look forward to your visits :-)Delete
what an unusual combo of ingredients and plated in those blue fish bowls, wow! gorgeous!ReplyDelete
Thanks, Jenna. The blue fish plates, definitely seem to have been a "wow" with everyone this week, which makes me smile, given what a bargain they were :-)Delete
What a perfect pairing, great salad with lots of flavor. I Love to go out to eat somewhere great and then re-create the recipe again at home.ReplyDelete
Thanks, Cheri. I agree, I often try to recreate dishes at home based on lovely meals I've enjoyed elsewhere. In fact I have quite a repertoire of dishes I make regularly that came about in just that way.Delete
First, those fish dishes are awesome! Second, yikes about your ceiling.ReplyDelete
Third (best for last), chorizo paired with calamari is about the best surf and turf I've heard of!
Thank you for sharing, Sue!
First - Michelle, you always leave the best comments - thank you :-)Delete
Second - the ceiling, to coin the phrase which passed into popular vernacular after the Christchurch earthquake, is completely "munted". But that's what insurance is for and it will be fixed. Not that I look forward to the disruption of having my kitchen and dining room ceiling ripped out and replaced - I shudder to think of the mess.
Third - the fish dishes have been a clear favourite this week - obviously I need to use them more.
Thanks again - have a great weekend xo
Oh delicious! I went to the Boat Shed many years ago....can't quite rememeber what we had, only that is was a wonderful lazy summer lunch :) And you must try his seafood, fennel & lime salad....delicious of course & so wonderfully bright & fresh :)ReplyDelete