Sea of Love Lost and Found

So after the post about stuffed cabbage, I would now like to introduce to you Stuffed Calamari. There is probably going to be a few repeat post about stuffed food items and this will be the second installment. This is a boastful post about a wonderfully exciting dish.

I love this recipe! It was lost a few weeks ago but so glad it resurrected and was found within my memory Rolodex.

My mother used this recipe for her eggroll filling; clear vermicelli noodles, black fungus, minced shrimp, pork, and onions. I have been inspired again by her, but have revised this recipe’s filling; pork, minced shrimp, onions, mint, ginger and Preserved lemons among some other ingredients.

I really adore Fregola Sarda. It’s a Sardinian pasta that is toasted and shaped like tiny marbles and it’s miraculously tasty. If you can’t find this pasta around you can also use barley, farro or orzo…but the texture of these nibbles are pretty awesome.

Stuffed Preserved Lemon Calamari of Shrimp and Pork over a bed of Fregola Sarda in a Spicy Tomato Sauce.

Oh another thing…you must absolutely consider that this protein will shrink drastically while cooking! Mine were about 5 inches and shrunk to 2 inches when cooked! So please fill them only halfway.

8 Whole Calamari or Squid
1/4 lb Ground Pork
5 large Shrimp or 6-7 medium-small
1/4 C. Minced Yellow Onion
2 T Minced Preserved Lemon
1 T. Chopped Mint
1/2 T. Grated Ginger
1/2 T. Salt
1 t. Pepper
1 C. Fregola Sarda

For the Sauce :
1/2 C. Diced Yellow Onion
1 T. Minced Garlic
1/2 T. Fresh Marjoram
1/2 T. Fresh Thyme
2 C. Chopped canned Tomatoes
1/2 T. Dried Red Chilli Flakes
1/2 T. Grated Ginger
1. Clean your Calamari by removing the head and the outer layer. To do this imagine peeling off a very thin glove. Also remove the hard backbone within the body. Set aside. When that is done begin to bring a pot of salted water to boil. When that comes to a boil add the fregola In the meantime…
2. Set your pork in a medium size mixing bowl. Remove your shrimp from their shells, remove the vein – now you can do this part two ways:
1. Using a heavy object like the back of a sauté pan you can pound your shrimp to a paste-like consistency or
2. Using a sharp knife just hand mince your shrimp.
Mince 1/2 a yellow onion, Dice the other half and reserve for the sauce. Mince your preserved Lemon reserve 1 1/2 T. for the sauce. Mince herbs set aside.
Combine the meat, onions, ginger, garlic, salt, pepper and preserved lemons into a bowl, and using your hands mix thoroughly.
3. For the Sauce: Sweat your garlic and onions with a bit of olive oil on medium heat. Do not brown. Add the next 2 ingredients let bloom (which means let the aromas seep out) add your tomatoes and simmer for 10 minutes on medium to low heat. Add a bit of water if has thickened too much. Add the rest of your ingredients: red pepper flakes, ginger.   If it helps use a grater or microplane for your ginger. Simmer lightly for another 5 minutes or so…
4. Place your stuffed calamari in a shallow baking dish, pour your cooked and drained fregola over, and then pour the sauce. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes. By this time you can see them shrink to about half their size!
Plate and enjoy as a lovely meal or as a small plate
One of my new favorites to wake up to…


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