- 3/4 cup milk
- 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 1 pound squid rings, defrosted if frozen
- Canola or vegetable oil for frying
- 1 cup corn starch
- 1 tablespoon Chinese Five-Spice powder
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3 large eggs, beaten
- Chopped, fresh cilantro
- Lemon wedges
- After defrosting the calamari, cut into 3/4-inch rings if they are whole. Place the milk and salt into a large bowl and stir well. Add the calamari and let soak for 30 minutes, up to two hours. Drain the milk from the bowl.
- In a heavy wok or saucepan, heat 3 to 4 inches of the oil until very hot, to around 350 F to 375 F degrees.
- Meanwhile, in a shallow bowl, whisk together the corn starch, Chinese Five Spice, cayenne pepper, and salt.
- In another shallow bowl, add the beaten eggs. Set up an assembly line with the three bowls.
- Working in batches, dip the calamari into the eggs, then dredge into cornstarch mixture, and shake off any excess.
- Add the dredged calamari in batches into the oil, and fry until crisp and golden, about 1 to 2 minutes. (To ensure the oil is hot enough, if the oil bubbles and forms around the calamari ring, and the calamari ring floats, then the oil is ready!)
- Remove calamari with a slotted spoon and let drain on a cookie sheet lined with paper towels. Repeat the process with the rest of the calamari.
- Sprinkle salt on the fried calamari as soon as it comes out of the pan. Keep the tray in the oven until ready to serve.
- Garnish with the fresh cilantro, and serve with the dipping sauce and lemon wedges on the side.
To make the dipping sauce: Whisk together the mayonnaise, sambal oelek, and sweet chili sauce. Serve on the side with the fried calamari.
- If buying frozen calamari, defrost in the sealed bag in the fridge overnight. Or, if you're pressed for time, you can place the calamari in a large bowl under cool running water for 5 to 10 minutes, and drain once it's no longer frozen.
- Maintain an optimal oil temperature of 350 F to 375 F. At this high heat, the calamari will brown and crisp right away, keeping the squid tender on the inside.
- To ensure the oil is hot enough, if the oil bubbles and forms around the calamari ring, and the calamari ring floats, then the oil is ready!
- If you can't find sambal oelek, you can substitute with sriracha sauce.
- Prep Time: 15 min
- Cook Time: 10 mins
- Category: Appetizer
- Method: Cook Top
- Cuisine: Asian Fusion
- Serving Size:
- Calories: 398
- Sugar: 1.6 g
- Sodium: 512.2 mg
- Fat: 26.1 g
- Carbohydrates: 24.6 g
- Protein: 15.2 g
- Cholesterol: 272.7 mg
Keywords: crispy calamari, fried calamari, squid, calamari