How to clean squids

Do you know how to clean squids? Well, unless you have been coached by your mom or someone who knows how to do it, squid can be pretty complicated to clean because they have many parts that need to be disposed off.

HOW TO KNOW IF THE SQUID IS FRESH?

Firstly, if you want to buy fresh squids, remember to find those that have almost transparent-like outer layer. If the squid is all reddish and purplish, they are not that fresh anymore.

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These are squids I bought this afternoon from the wet market and they are still very fresh looking. Do you notice how the top one is much whiter than the other two? It is hard for us to get really transparent like ones so that’s the best we can get.

MOST IMPORTANT – GET RID OF THE INK BAG

Step one is to gently pull the head or tentacles from the body. Do not yank too hard or the ink bag will be left in the body.

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That tiny silverish tear-drop shape sac is the ink. Use your finger and gently pull it off and throw them away. Of course, the ink is only unsightly but it is edible. There are Italian pasta made with squid ink. Make sure you get rid of the ink bag from every squids.

GET RID OF THE TEETH

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I am not sure what it is called but it is like a tooth. Press the top of the tentacle part and the hard lump of sharp, brownish ‘fang’ will pop out.


CUT OUT THE EYES

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Take a sharp knife and gently cut out the eyes. They can squirt you messy liquid so do it under running water if you do not want to get splattered with purplish black liquid.

Now you have very clean tentacles.

PULL OUT THE SOFT ‘BONE’

Now, let’s tackle the body. In each squid, there is this transparent thingie which is like the bone. Pull them out.

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Also check that there are no dead fishes and grime in the body of the squid. Sometimes, the squid have undigested pieces of foods which can be very icky. However, if what’s left inside are white, creamy stuffs, those are the eggs. You will want to keep them.

GET RID OF THE PURPLE LAYER

Finally, use your fingernails and tear off the purplish, polka dotted layer. Then you will have perfect, white and cleaned squids.

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Squids can be stored well in the freezer compartment.

When cooking, squids will ooze a lot of water. So, if you wish to make a dry dish, remember to give the squid a quick stir in a pan over fire to get rid of the water before cooking them.

I have another post on how to make criss-cross cut on squids. Squid tastes good in tomyam, seafood noodles, curries and is nice in Chinese steamboat.

Post Author: Lilian

Food, travel, recipes. Chinese Malaysian, blogger, photographer and writer.

6 thoughts on “How to clean squids

    pablopabla

    (January 19, 2008 - 10:11 pm)

    I didn’t know there are so many steps to clean the squids. The last time I did it, I just pulled out the plastic looking thingy 😛

    Athene

    (January 20, 2008 - 12:02 am)

    lilian, I think the ‘teeth’ you are refering to is actually the genital, but I could be wrong.I always make sure I remove it, most people don’t though but I then I don’t remove the eyes…. I guess we do thing the way our moms do… 🙂

    […] If you’re like me, you have no idea how to prepare a fucking squid. This is no excuse, however, to back away from enjoying one of seafood’s more interesting dishes. In this How To, you’ll discover some important safety tips on removing the teeth, eyes, and the all-important ink sack. Interesting fact: The ink is edible and used to create some Italian pastas. Enjoy — but brush your teeth afterwards. [via malaysiabest] […]

    moo_t

    (January 20, 2008 - 10:17 pm)

    Some interesting facts :
    i. The teeth are edible. Old teochew will complain if the “teeth” is missing from the squid.

    ii. The ink are main ingredient for Post Arroz Negro (Black Squid Ink Paella)

    […] love squids. I have several posts on cooking squids, cleaning squids and cutting criss-cross pattern on […]

    […] In case you want to learn how to cut criss-cross designs on squids or how to clean squids. […]

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