Thai Cornish Cuttlefish salad
Autumn arrived this week and outside definitely felt like it. Last night the wind picked up and it started raining so I snuggled up on the sofa wrapped in a blanket with a glass of wine … I won’t lie, I still hope for some Indian summer this year but time is running out very quickly and we will soon be buying Christmas presents !!!
Summer goes far too fast so I thought I will cook something to cheer us up on this rainy cold evening. I found this recipe in one of my cookery books a few years back and still love it! If you like a bit of eastern flavour in your food this salad will be right up your street.
I got some local cuttlefish from one of the lovely fishermen in the village. It was straight from the fishing boat so it cannot get any better than that. If you can get hold of clean cuttlefish it will save you some time and an inky mess J I don’t mind as my dad told me that fresh food comes at price. If you don’t know how to clean cuttlefish, I recommend a cookery course or You Tube – you can find all sorts of videos on how to deal with fresh cuttlefish. When this part is done the easy part starts:
Ingredients for the salad:
500g of cuttlefish, Cornish is best!
1-2 small lettuce, use your favourite. I used romaine, butterhead and iceberg.
Mint and coriander leaves
For the dressing:
3 tbsp lime juice
3 tbsp fish sauce
1 red bird’s eye chilli, thinly sliced
1 tsp palm sugar
10 g garlic, finely chopped
2 fat lemongrass stalks, core finely chopped
1 kaffir lime leaf, finely shredded
Lets get cooking!
Slit the body of the cuttlefish along one side, open them out flat and score the inner surface with a fine diamond pattern with the tip off a small, sharp knife. Cut the cuttlefish pouches lengthways into 4 wide strips, and then each strip across into 3 pieces. Score the fins in the same way and cut each one in half. Separate the tentacles into pairs.
Bring 1.5 litres of water (with 2 teaspoons of salt) to the boil in a pan. Add the pieces of cuttlefish small handfuls at a time and cook for about 1 minute until it has just turned white and opaque, then lift the cuttlefish into a colander and leave to drain well. Repeat with the remaining cuttlefish, bringing the water back to a gentle boil each time. When all the cuttlefish is cooked, leave it to cool to room temperature.
Mix the ingredients for the dressing together in a bowl. Taste it until the balance is right.
Scatter the lettuce leaves, shredded spring onions and herbs onto the base of a serving plate. Mix the dressing and the cuttlefish and then spoon it over the top of the salad with the excess dressing. Serve straight away.
I like this salad with prawn crackers but you can eat it with a fresh baguette or just with wine.