Quick and easy salt and pepper squid

Let’s talk about squid, baby, let’s talk about aioli. If you’re not familiar with the 80s band, Salt-N-Pepa, then none of that would have made any sense. But if you are familiar with them then, hey, we have something in common with this recipe. Simple and incredibly catchy, you can whip up this salt and pepper seasoned, pan-fried squid in 20 minutes. Now that’s easy entertaining. Unless of course you’re allergic to seafood. In that case, move right along.



Prep time: 10 mins | Cook time: 10 mins | Serves: 8–10

For the miso spiced aioli:
1 egg yolk
1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
1 clove garlic, crushed
Juice of ½ lemon
2 Tbsp miso paste (you can buy this from most grocery shops or Asian groceries, but if you want to leave it out you can also make simple lemon mayo for this dish )
60ml olive oil
100ml canola oil

For the squid:
Oil, for frying
85g cornflour
85g plain flour
2 tsp black pepper
Pinch of salt
2 Tbsp szechuan peppercorns, crushed
500g squid, cleaned

Never heard of aioli before? It’s a Provençal emulsion like sauce made with garlic, oil, lemon juice and egg. The name aioli is a combination of the two Provençal words for garlic (alh) and oil (oli). And now you know. Let’s cook.


1. To make the aioli: place the egg yolk in a blender and add mustard, garlic, lemon and miso. Whizz briefly to combine. Mix the two oils together. With the motor of your blender still running, pour the oils into the egg mixture until the mixture is thick and glossy. Remove and keep in the fridge until needed.
2. Next, heat a medium sized saucepan with about 3 inches of sunflower or canola oil.
3. Mix together the cornflour, flour and ground peppers with a large pinch of salt.
4. Cover the squid in the flour mixture and shallow fry in a frying pan in batches until golden brown and cooked through – it shouldn’t take more than 2–3 minutes for each batch.


Note: the squid is naturally full of water. So, when you fry, the squid will spit and behave quite badly. Use a smaller saucepan and lid, or use a splatter screen to protect yourself and your kitchen.

Drain on kitchen towel and serve immediately with your homemade miso aioli.

Now how’s that for tasty tapas from the sea? We reckon a good chardonnay and some Kenny G would set this party alight. Try this Fram chardonnay for brilliant citrus and elegant cereal notes.