Meals and Courses

  • 1 kg (2 lb) raw squid
  • 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus extra to serve
  • 1 fresh red chilli, thinly sliced into rounds
  • 500 g (1 lb) cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 100 ml (3½ fl oz) dry vermouth
  • 400 g (13 oz) dried spaghetti
  • 15 g (½ oz) basil leaves
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • grated rind of ½ unwaxed lemon
  • salt

Wash the squid under cold running water. Pull the tentacles away from the body – the entrails will come out easily. Remove the clear piece of cartilage from the body cavity. Wash the body thoroughly, pulling away the pinkish membrane. Cut between the tentacles and head, discarding the head and entrails. Repeat with the remaining squid. Cut the cleaned squid bodies into rounds, dry thoroughly with kitchen paper and keep chilled and covered until required.

Heat the oil in a large frying pan over a high heat, add the chilli and tomatoes and season with salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 5–6 minutes until the tomatoes start to soften and look slightly charred. Pour in the vermouth and boil rapidly for 2 minutes.

Cook the pasta in a saucepan of salted boiling water according to the packet instructions until al dente. Drain.

When the pasta is almost ready, bring the tomato sauce to the boil and stir in the squid, garlic and lemon rind. Cook, stirring, for 1 minute, then toss in the pasta and stir until well combined. Scatter the basil leaves over the top and serve immediately.

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