Squid deserves a spotlight and this recipe from Chester Gerl at Hundred Acres does it. While many seafood choices come with warnings of mercury or overfishing, squid populations remain both clean and robust. Plus it’s one of the most affordable proteins around and cooks in about a minute flat. Have your garlic prepped before you put the squid in the pan — it can go from tender to rubbery in a flash.Watercress, as the name implies, likes its feet wet. Some Catskills farmers forage for the weed along the banks of pristine mountain streams, bringing the peppery plant to market by the bunch. Here watercress is whirred into a quick salsa verde you’ll want to eat by the spoon. To make this dish an appetizer instead of an entrée, omit the potatoes.
- 1 pound Yukon gold potatoes
- 1 bunch watercress, about 3 ounces, any tough stems removed
- 1/2 bunch flat-leaf parsley, with stems
- 1 thinly sliced garlic clove
- Zest and juice of one lemon, divided
- Pinch red chili flakes
- 1 anchovy
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 1 1/4 pounds squid
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, cut into slivers
- 1/2 teaspoon aleppo pepper (optional)
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- Salt to taste
- Preheat the oven to 350° F.
- Prepare the potatoes: In a large stockpot, cover whole potatoes with cold water. Salt generously and bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the potatoes are fork tender. Drain, cool, and quarter the potatoes and place them on a sheet tray. Toss with 2 tablespoons olive oil and salt. Bake for 15 minutes, or until light golden brown.
- Make the salsa verde: In a food processor, combine the watercress, parsley, garlic, 1 teaspoon each of lemon zest and juice, chili flakes, anchovy, salt, and vinegar. With the motor running, drizzle in 1 tablespoon olive oil and the vegetable oil. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
- Prepare the squid: Cut the squid into bite-size pieces. Heat a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Once very hot, add the olive oil. Sauté the garlic for about 10 seconds, then add the squid and a pinch of salt. Toss and cook until opaque yet still tender, about 1 minute. Add the Aleppo and smoked paprika and sauté for 10 seconds. Add 1 tablespoon lemon juice and remove from the heat.
- Toss the warm potatoes with a few spoonfuls of salsa verde. Top with the squid and pan juices and serve with additional salsa verde on the side.