Grilled Calamari Salad with Fresh Summer Beans
Source: Mark Dommen, Chef and Partner, One Market Restaurant.
2 cups shelling beans (we are using butter beans today, but you can use whichever shelling bean you prefer)
Strong fortified vegetable stock or water
2 cups green beans (we are using Romano and Yellow Wax, but feel free to use whichever you prefer)
2 medium red heirloom or vine ripe tomatoes
¼ cup nicoise olives, pits removed and cut into small pieces
¾ cup grapeseed oil (or light oil for frying)
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped
2 tablespoons basil, chopped
2 tablespoon mint, chopped
2 tablespoons chives, chopped
1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
8 fresh anchovies
1 cup kosher salt
8-12 whole calamari, depending on size
- To prepare the shelling beans: Remove the beans from their pods and cook them in vegetable stock or water at very low heat until tender. Season with salt once they are done cooking and allow to cool in their liquid. Make sure the beans are always completely submerged in the cooking liquid or they will crack and dry out.
- To prepare the green beans: Wash the beans and trim the ends off. Bring a large pot of salted water to boil, cook the beans until just tender, and drain well. Submerge the beans in ice water to stop them from overcooking. Once cooled, drain well.
- To prepare the tomatoes: Remove the core from the tomatoes and make a small “X” shaped incision on the opposite end of the tomato. Drop the tomatoes into boiling water for 10 seconds and remove. Allow them to cool until they can be handled in your bare hands. With a pairing knife, peel the skin off the tomatoes. Cut them into quarters and remove the core and seeds, reserve for another use. Dice the tomato into small even squares. Place the diced tomatoes into a bowl and add the olives to the tomatoes.
- Peel the shallot and slice very thinly. Fry the rings in ½ cup of grape seed oil, at a low temperature. Gently keep the shallots moving in the oil so they fry evenly and become crisp. Remove from oil and drain on a paper towel, set aside.
- Toast the coriander seeds in a small sauté pan by gently shaking the seeds in the pan over medium heat until they are light brown. Remove the seeds from the pan and allow them to cool slightly, then transfer to a mortar and pestle or a spice grinder and grind lightly. Add to the tomatoes.
- Add 1 ½ tablespoons of each herb to the tomatoes and olives. Drain the shelling beans and add them to the tomato mixture along with the green beans. Mix well and season to taste with sea salt and pepper. Remove the zest from half of one of the lemons using a vegetable peeler and cut into a fine julienne. Add the zest and the juice from the lemon to the beans along with the olive oil. Mix well and set aside.
- To prepare the anchovies: With the back of a knife, scrape the scales off the fish and rinse in water. Using a pair of scissors, remove the head and cut off the belly. Squeeze out the innards and with your index finger and thumb strip out the center bones and detach the bones at the tail. You should now have a butterflied anchovy. Trim the top fin with the scissors. Repeat with all the anchovies. Spread a layer of kosher salt on a tray or baking sheet and lay the anchovies on top, cover them with another layer of salt. Cure the anchovies for 10 minutes and remove them from the salt. Rinse off any excess salt and pat dry with a paper towel. If you are not going to use the anchovies right away, keep them submerged in extra-virgin olive oil with lemon zest and herbs.
- To prepare the calamari: Clean by removing the innards, eyes and beak. Remove and keep the tentacles. Peel away the outside skin so that the calamari becomes a white tube. Rinse the tube in water, and then cut it lengthwise along one side so that it can fold open and lay flat. With the inside facing up, score the calamari in a criss-cross fashion, being careful to not cut through the calamari. Repeat with each calamari.
- Lay the calamari pieces flat on a tray, brush with olive oil, season with salt and pepper. Skewer all the bodies by laying calamari flat and putting one skewer through the left side and one skewer through the right side of each piece, skewer the tentacles on separate metal skewers. Light a grill to high heat, place the bodies on the grill (scored side down) and cook for 45 to 60 seconds. Turn the calamari and grill for another 15 seconds. When you take it off the grill it will curl up like a tube. Do the same with the skewered tentacles. Also at this time, season the anchovies with fresh ground black pepper and grill for 30 seconds to 1 minute on the skin side. Sprinkle both the calamari and the anchovies with a little fresh lemon juice.
- To serve: Divide the bean salad among 4 each plates. Top each salad with two to three pieces of calamari and two pieces of anchovy. I like to serve the calamari so each plate has a rolled tube and tentacles to look like a whole squid. Top with some fried shallot rings. Garnish with the remaining herbs, sprinkle with a little salt and drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil.