Cornmeal Crusted Calamari with Spicy Horseradish

Prep time: 
 Cook time: 
 Total time: 
35 minutes
Cornmeal Crusted Calamari with Spicy Horseradish

Mention calamari and you usually get a "love it or leave it" response. But these crispy, golden-brown rings served with Spicy Horseradish Aioli have made believers out of many former calamari doubters. The key is to cook the calamari rings only until they are just golden so that they stay tender and don't take on the texture of rubber bands. I suggest making the aioli sauce a day or two ahead and breading the calamari in advance. Then when your guests arrive, just heat the oil and fry 'em up. A pretty platter of calamari and aioli makes a beautiful centerpiece. You'll love this calamari with our tasty tartar sauce. Just add friends and a nice bottle of pinot gris, and you've got the perfect recipe for an evening of conviviality.


  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • 2-3 tbsp Bubbies Spicy Horseradish
  • 1 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp fresh chives, chopped
  • Pinch of salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 ½ pounds calamari, cleaned, with bodies cut into ½ inch rings
  • 2 cups cornmeal
  • ½ cup flour
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 2 tsp garlic salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup oil (avocado, coconut or other) for frying


  1. To make aioli, combine mayonnaise, horseradish, lemon juice, chives, salt and pepper in a small bowl.
  2. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
  3. Mix cornmeal, flour, and spices in a shallow dish.
  4. Whisk eggs together in another shallow dish.
  5. Dry calamari rings in a paper towel and lightly salt and pepper them.
  6. Have a baking sheet nearby to transfer calamari onto after dipping.
  7. Take a small handful of calamari and dip into egg mixture, then into cornmeal mixture to coat. Shake off excess and transfer to baking sheet and continue with remaining rings.
  8. Preheat oven to 180 degrees, and line a baking sheet with paper towels.
  9. This will keep the cooked calamari warm while frying.
  10. To a large, deep skillet add desired oil about ¼- ½ inch deep.
  11. Heat over high heat to about 350 degrees.
  12. Add calamari, working in batches without crowding, and cook until golden brown on each side. Remove with a slotted spoon to lined baking sheet, and keep warm in oven while frying remaining fish.
  13. Serve warm with horseradish aioli.
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