The successful experiment in simmering daikon with squid (click here to see the recipe) reminded me how much I love squid and made me look for new squid dishes. If I hadn’t seen this recipe in The Food and Cooking of Korea by Young Jin Song, I would have never even dreamt of stir-frying white cabbage and even less combining it with squid. Therefore, I treated it as a high-risk experiment, but the result was stunningly good. Actually it was so good that I prepared this dish three times last week! The cabbage was refreshing, slightly crunchy, while the squid was soft and soaked with my beloved and typically Korean sweet and hot flavours. Since the cabbage, a Winter vegetable par excellence, is treated here in a definitely springtime or summertime way, I found this dish a perfect choice for a between-the-seasons meal.
I have slightly modified the recipe skipping the chilies because the gochujang (Korean chili paste) and chili powder make it already quite hot. If you prefer very hot dishes, add 2 fresh chopped chilies to the first frying step.
TIP: You can prepare this dish in advance and serve it… cold. It is delicious served as a cold salad.
Preparation: 20 minutes
Ingredients (serves two):
2 fresh or thawed, cleaned medium squids (mine were about 15 cm long, excluding the tentacles)
1 medium white onion, chopped or sliced
2 cabbage leaves, cubed (without the central thick vein)
1 big carrot, julienned
2 flat tablespoons Korean chili powder
1 garlic clove, crushed or grated
2 tablespoons sake
1 tablespoon gochujang (Korean chili paste)
1 tablespoon maple or agave syrup
1 teaspoon sesame oil
(soy sauce or salt to taste)
1 teaspoon (or more) sesame seeds
2 tablespoons oil
Cut off the squid fins and put them aside.
Cut the squid tube lengthwise in order to obtain one flat sheet.
Score it diagonally into a criss-cross pattern (the interior side) and then cut it into 2 cm strips.
Do the same with the fins.
Cut the tentacles into bite-sized pieces.
Heat the oil in a pan and stir-fry the cabbage, the carrot and the onion for about 2 minutes.
Add the squid and the chili powder and fry them, stirring for another 2 minutes.
Finally add the gochujang, the garlic, the sake, the syrup and the sesame oil. Season with soy sauce or salt to taste. Stir-fry until the squid is cooked (about 3-5 minutes). Each strip should be white (whiter than the raw squid) and curled.
Sprinkle with sesame seeds and serve.