In most Chinese restaurants, so-called “Salt and Pepper-Style” shrimp or squid usually contain other spices too. A good dose of 5-spice mixture makes these fried squid especially tasty, and dusting them with cornstarch before frying keeps them delicately crisp. Maintain the oil temperature at 375 degrees, and don’t try to fry too many pieces at once.
- 1 ½ pounds cleaned squid, bodies cut crosswise into 1-inch pieces, tentacles halved
- Vegetable oil, for frying
- 1 cup cornstarch
- ⅛ teaspoon cayenne
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- ½ teaspoon five-spice powder
- 1 or 2 serrano chiles, split lengthwise and sliced thinly crosswise
- Cilantro sprigs, for garnish
- Lime wedges, for serving
- Nutritional Information
Note: Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available data.
Nutritional analysis per serving (4 servings)
558 calories; 33 grams fat; 2 grams saturated fat; 0 grams trans fat; 22 grams monounsaturated fat; 6 grams polyunsaturated fat; 35 grams carbohydrates; 0 grams dietary fiber; 0 grams sugars; 26 grams protein; 396 milligrams cholesterol; 659 milligrams sodium
4 to 6 servings
- Rinse squid well in cold water, then drain well and pat dry with kitchen towels.
- Heat 2 inches of vegetable oil in a wok or cast-iron pan. Adjust heat to maintain 375 degrees.
- In a medium bowl, stir together cornstarch, cayenne, salt, black pepper and five-spice powder. Set bowl near stove.
- Dip squid pieces into cornstarch mixture, one by one, and immediately slip carefully into hot oil. Let fry, making sure not to crowd the pan. (Use 2 pans or work in batches if necessary.) Turn pieces with tongs to ensure even cooking. When squid is lightly browned, after about 2 minutes, remove pieces and blot on paper towels.
- Transfer squid to a serving bowl and sprinkle with chiles. Garnish with cilantro and serve with lime wedges.