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Calamaria Parayemista

1 kg Small squid
1/2 c Corn oil
1 md Onion; finely chopped
1/2 c Short-grain rice
1/2 c Tomato puree
1/4 c Water
1 sm Cinnamon stick
2 Cloves
Salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 c Dry white wine


Servings: 6

Select squid with hoods about 10-12 cm (4-5 inches) long.

To clean squid, pull off head and attached tentacles. Cut out eyes and beak and discard. Clean dark skin from head and tentacles by pulling it off or rubbing off with a cloth dipped in coarse salt. Rinse, chop 3 to 4 into small pieces and keep aside. Remainder may be stored and fried later.

Clean out hood (body) and remove transparent backbone from inside. Pull or rub off skin. Rinse well, drain and dry.

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a pan and gently fry onion until transparent. Stir in rice and stir over heat for 2 minutes. Add tomato puree, water, cinnamon stick, cloves, chopped squid, and salt and pepper to taste. Cover and simmer over low heat for 10 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Remove cinnamon stick and cloves.

Fill hoods with rice mixture, packing it in loosely as rice expands and hoods contract during cooking. Close top with wooden cocktail picks or sew with strong thread.

Heat remaining oil in a deep pan and fry squid hoods until lightly coloured, turning them frequently. Reduce heat, add wine, cover and simmer gently on low heat for 1 hour or until squid is tender. Add a little water to pan if necessary during cooking. Serve hot or warm as a mezethaki (appetizer).


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