Prawn on the Lawn’s Rick and Katie Toogood’s pan-fried whole squid

06 Jul 2021 | Updated on: 27 Sep 2022 |By Luxury London

"Keeping squid whole and frying in the pan gives you a great contrast in textures – the wings crisp up and the body should melt in your mouth. Combine this with the dressing in this recipe

Serves 4

For the dressing:

1 tbsp capers, chopped2 tbsp white balsamic or sherry vinegara small handful of tarragon, chopped1 tbsp preserved lemon, chopped2 tsp of liquor from the preserved lemon jar3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil1 garlic clove, finely chopped1 banana shallot, finely chopped4 squid, cleaned and kept whole, including tentacles, around 800 g/1lb 12 oz in totalextra-virgin olive oil, for drizzlingsea salt, to tastewedges of lemon, to serve


Mix together all the dressing ingredients and set aside.

Lay the squid out, so the wings are flat on the board. Using a sharp knife, carefully score the top side of the squid, ensuring these scores don’t go through to the underside of the hood. Pat the squid and tentacles dry with paper towels, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with a little salt.

Heat a frying pan (skillet), large enough to hold all the squid, until nice and hot. Add the tentacles first as these need a little more cooking than the body. After 1 minute, lay the body in the pan with the wings flat on the surface of the pan. Don’t be tempted to move the squid, just let it cook for about 2 minutes, until it has built up some golden colour, then flip it over and repeat.

Place the squid on the serving plates and spoon over the dressing, having given it a good mix beforehand. Add another sprinkle of salt and serve, with lemon wedges on the side.

Pairs well with: a dry, pale and crisp rosé from Provence or the Loire Valley

The Prawn on the Lawn cookbook is published by Pavilion Books, £18.99