Garlicky Grilled Squid with Marinated Peppers

Photo by Alex Lau, Prop Styling by Amy Wilson, Food Styling by Susie Theodorou

As if grilled squid that's tender in the middle and charred on the exterior weren't good enough, we're pairing it with smoky bell peppers and a lemony herb salad. For the most delicious squid possible, look for small bodies and tentacles (bodies should be about four inches in length and tentacles about two) and pat dry before tossing in the garlic oil.

Yield
4 servings

Ingredients

    • 1/3 cup coarsely chopped blanched hazelnuts or almonds
    • 2 Tbsp. plus 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided
    • Kosher salt
    • 4 large red bell peppers
    • 2 Tbsp. sherry vinegar or red wine vinegar
    • 1 tsp. hot smoked Spanish paprika
    • 3 garlic cloves, divided
    • 1 1/2 lb. cleaned squid, bodies and tentacles separated
    • 1/2 small red onion, very thinly sliced
    • 1 cup mint leaves, torn if large
    • 1/2 lemon

Preparation

    1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Toast hazelnuts on a rimmed baking sheet, tossing once, until golden brown, 7–10 minutes. Let cool, then crush nuts using the side of a chef’s knife or coarsely chop. Transfer to a small bowl. Mix in 2 Tbsp. oil and season with salt. Set aside.
    2. Prepare a grill for high heat and place a wire rack on one side, orienting it perpendicular to grill grate. Place bell peppers directly on grate (not on wire rack) and grill, turning occasionally, until charred all over and flesh is very soft, 8–10 minutes.
    3. Transfer bell peppers to a medium bowl and cover tightly with plastic wrap. Let sit 10–20 minutes (doing this extends the cooking and softens the skins). Remove skins from peppers and scoop out seeds; discard. Tear or slice peppers into large pieces and place in a clean medium bowl. Add vinegar, paprika, and 1/4 cup oil and finely grate 1 garlic clove into bowl. Season with salt and toss well to coat peppers.
    4. Return grill to high heat. Finely grate remaining 2 garlic cloves into a large bowl; stir in remaining 1/4 cup oil. Pat squid dry, then add to oil mixture; toss well to coat. Working in batches, grill squid on wire rack on grill until marks appear on bodies and tentacles begin to crisp around the edges, 45–60 seconds per side. Transfer to a clean large bowl and season with salt.
    5. Place onion and mint in a small bowl. Finely grate zest from lemon half over, then squeeze in juice. Season with salt and toss to combine.
    6. Divide marinated peppers and squid among plates. Spoon hazelnuts over and top with mint salad.

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