Don’t stash the barbecue yet.
SEAN MACDONALD extends grilling season with a flavourful take on calamari
A tweak to your grilling routine can help extend summer barbecue season
September signals the end of summer, so I try to spend as much time as possible outdoors with my family while the weather is still warm, and backyard barbecues are one of my favourite ways to do that. The flavours of the grill accented by warm weather and a cold beer are second to none.
I grew up in Alberta, where beef is always the protein of choice and a big rib-eye cooked to medium rare is the summer time go-to. When I’m craving something different after a summer full of beef, I love to put seafood on charcoal, especially calamari. However, grilling calamari is tricky. It’s a delicate balance not to overcook it, which makes it rubbery and chewy.
The recipe here is from the menu at one of my restaurants, 7 Enoteca in Oakville, Ont., and includes a simple trick that tenderizes the calamari, trapping in flavour and perfecting the texture for an easy bite. The flavour combination of pickled shishito peppers and olives make for a light, spicy dish to help you bid farewell to the season.