Calamari with Togarashi and Meyer Lemon Aioli

Calamari with Togarashi and Meyer Lemon Aioli

Grilled calamari is delicious combined with our Herbie's Shichimi Togarashi based on a traditional Japanese seasoning with a hot chilli bite controlled with a soft Meyer Lemon Aioli. Relish this whole dish by enjoying it with our Relish Roussanne.


  • Squid, cleaned and cut into 1/2 inch rings  ·  1 1/2 pound 
  • Buttermilk  ·  2 cups 
  • All Purpose Flour  ·  3 cups 
  • bunch Parsley, finely chopped  ·  1/2 
  • Vegetable Oil  ·  4 cups 
  • Herbie's Shichimi Togarashi  ·  3 tablespoons 
  • Salt & Pepper  ·   
  •  ·   
  • For Aioli:  ·   
  • Mayonnaise  ·  2 cups 
  • Meyer Lemons, freshly juiced  ·  3 whole 
  • Sugar  ·  1 tablespoon 
  • Garlic Cloves, minced  ·  2 
  • Salt  ·   


Start by soaking the sliced squid in buttermilk in a small bowl. Soak in the refrigerator for up to 1 hour.

Heat the vegetable oil in a heavy bottomed pot over med. high heat. until it reaches 375 degrees.

Meanwhile for the meyer lemon aioli; add the mayonnaise, lemon juice, garlic, and sugar to a med. bowl and mix to combine. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Reserve.

Take the squid out of the refrigerator and grab one more small bowl to set up your dredging station. Add the flour to the second bowl and add 2 of the 3 tablespoons of Herbie's Shichimi Togartashi, and season with salt and pepper.

Once the oil has reached 375 degrees; take the rings out of the buttermilk and coat liberally in the flour making sure to shake the excess flour off each one. Slowly add the calamari rings to the oil in small batches. They should take about 2 min to cook. Once they are golden brown take them out of the oil and drain on paper towels. Use the last tablespoon of Herbie's Shichimi Togarashi to season the calamari along with salt to taste.

Garnish with chopped parsley and serve immediately with meyer lemon aioli.

Chef Tommy's Tips:

  • Shichimi Togarashi translates from Japanese as "seven chili spices" because seven ingredients are generally used however our Herbie's version contains sea salt, chili, white poppy seeds, unhulled golden sesame seeds, black sesame seeds, orange peel, brown mustard seeds, Sichuan pepper and lemon myrtle. This combination of spices can be used to sprinkle on fish, seafood and both white and red meats before cooking, or use as a tasty seasoning at the table instead of salt and pepper.

  • Looking for a lighter sauce? Instead of the Meyer Lemon Aioli you could make a White Wine Shallot Reduction with Meyer Lemon. Start by heating 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a sauté pan over med. high heat. Finely mince 1 shallot and sauté until translucent. Turn the heat off and add 1 cup of white wine, along with the juice of 1 meyer lemon. Turn the heat back up to high and reduce the liquid down to ½ cup. Take the sauce off the heat and whisk in 2 tablespoons of honey. Serve warm or cold with the Calamari.

  • The best way is to purchase the calamari already cleaned and prepped from the store. If you happened to catch a squid in the raw then place the calamari in a colander, rinse under cold running water and pat dry. Pull the tentacles off the bodies. Cut any large tentacles in half and any longer bodies into 2-inch pieces. Cut away the small beaks from the tentacles; discard the beaks. Drain the calamari in the colander.