Rhode Island-Style Fried Calamari
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WHY THIS RECIPE WORKS
This version of fried calamari features tender, lightly springy squid and sliced banana peppers encased in a crispy, lacy, golden-brown crust, which are then garnished with more peppers straight from the jar. Slicing the squid bodies into ¾... Read More
GATHER YOUR INGREDIENTS
BEFORE YOU BEGIN
If desired, serve the calamari with Quick Marinara Sauce or Spicy Mayonnaise; make the sauce before preparing the squid. Use a Dutch oven that holds 6 quarts or more for this recipe. Precut squid will not cook up quite as tender as whole bodies that you cut yourself, but they are acceptable. If desired, you can double this recipe and fry the calamari in four batches; the amount of oil remains the same. We tested this recipe with King Arthur Gluten-Free Multi-Purpose Flour, and the results were acceptable.
Set wire rack in rimmed baking sheet. Set second rack in second sheet and line with triple layer of paper towels. Heat oven to 200 degrees.
Whisk milk and salt together in medium bowl. Combine flour, baking powder, and pepper in second medium bowl. Add squid to milk mixture and toss to coat. Using your hands or slotted spoon, remove half of squid, allowing excess milk mixture to drip back into bowl, and add to bowl with flour mixture. Using your hands, toss to coat evenly. Gently shake off excess flour and place coated squid in single layer on unlined rack. Repeat with remaining squid. Add 1 cup banana peppers to flour mixture and toss with your hands to coat evenly. Gently shake off excess flour mixture and sprinkle peppers evenly among squid. Let sit for 10 minutes.
While squid and peppers rest, heat oil in Dutch oven over high heat to 350 degrees. Carefully add half of squid and peppers and fry for exactly 3 minutes (squid will be golden brown). Using slotted spoon or spider skimmer, transfer calamari and peppers to paper towel–lined rack and place in oven to keep warm. Return oil to 350 degrees and repeat with remaining squid and peppers. Transfer calamari and peppers to platter, top with remaining peppers, and serve immediately with lemon wedges.