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Calamari Calabrese RECIPE

This recipe was contributed by Shirley Cline.

Shirley was a great inspiration when I first started working on the idea of creating a recipe and cooking web site. Not only did she encourage me but she also supplied a great many recipes and other pieces which are featured throughout the site. Her great achievement was to teach me to cook risotto over the internet!

Although I never had the chance to meet Shirley, or even talk to her, I regarded her as a good friend. It was with great sadness that I learnt that she passed away in Autumn 2004 and that there would be no more emails. I think she will be sadly missed by a lot of people like me to whom she gave such pleasure with the sharing or her recipes. The pleasure my children have had from her recipe for Strawberries with Balsamic Vinegar and Mint - not to mention the fights for seconds - has been a joy to behold.

This is what she had to say about this one: "This recipe comes from Scoma's, one of our better Italian Seafood Restaurants at the Wharf in San Francisco. I've never made it but I've had it several times and it's great. Those of you who don't like squid - HIDE YOUR EYES".


Tomato Sauce:
1 large onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, mashed
3 Tblsp. olive oil 
2 (1 lb.) cans whole tomatoes
1 Tblsp. tomato paste
2 whole bay leaves
1/2 tsp. oregano
1/4 tsp. sage

Cream Sauce:
3 Tblsp. butter 
3 Tblsp. flour 
1 cup milk
1/2 cup white wine
Salt and pepper to taste

Vegetables and Squid (Calamari):
1 large onion, coarsely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 lb. fresh mushrooms sliced
1 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
3 lbs. squid (calamari)
Olive oil (do not substitute)


To make the tomato sauce:

  • Saute the onion and garlic in the olive oil for 5 to 6 minutes. 
  • Add the other ingredients and cook, stirring occasionally for about 30 minutes or until the sauce thickens slightly.
  • Set aside to cool.

To prepare the cream sauce:

  • Melt the butter over low heat until it bubbles, then gradually stir in the flour and cook stirring for 3 to 5 minutes.
  • Slowly stir in the milk and continue to stir until the sauce is very thick and smooth.
  • Add the wine and seasonings.
  • Set aside.

To prepare:

  • In a large pan, combine the tomato sauce, cream sauce and vegetables.
  • Clean the squid (or buy it already cleaned).
  • Cut the squid into bite-size pieces, rinse and drain thoroughly. 
  • Dredge the squid lightly in the flour and fry in the oil over high heat until well browned.
  • Remove from skillet and drain thoroughly.
  • Add the squid to the sauce, reheat slightly and serve.
Serves 4 - 6

Shirley Cline

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