MUSHROOM “CALAMARI” The word calamari comes from the Italian for “squid.” But as vegans, we don’t want squid on our plates, now do we? Calamari is most commonly served as deep-fried battered rings with a side of “slap chips” (Fries).

Condiments vary from Tartar sauce, garlic butter, lemon butter, etc. Although. You are probably making this at home, so you can add whatever the hell you feel like!

You will most definitely be able to bamboozle almost anyone with these “calamari” rings. I even started to doubt myself while eating them.

INGREDIENTS:

CALAMARI:

3 King Oyster Mushrooms

BEER BATTER:

1 Cup All Purpose Flour

1 Tbs Neutral flavored oil

1 Sheet Nori (Sushi Sheet)

1-2 grams of Kelp (dried seaweed) 1/2 tsp. Garlic Powder

1/2 tsp. Onion Powder

1/2 tsp. Smoked Paprika

1/2 tsp. Parsley

1/2 tsp. Pepper

1 tsp Salt

200 ml Beer (an Ale works great) TARTAR SAUCE:

3 Tbsp. Vegan Mayo

1/4 Gherkin (ninja turtle willie) 1 tsp. Fresh Dill

1 tsp. Lemon Juice

1 Pinch of salt METHOD: PREPPING THE MUSHROOMS

Cut the mushrooms into +-1cm thick discs. Hollow out the center of each disc using a paring knife don’t cut yourself

(Depending on the girth of the mushroom, you can sometimes get 3 rings from 1 disc.)

Put rings in a bowl and dust with flour. (The flour helps the batter to adhere better)

PREPPING THE BATTER

Mix flour and spices in a small bowl.

Put Nori sheet and Kelp in a blender for a few seconds to make a fine powder.

(you could do this in a coffee grinder or a mortar and pestle)

Combine Nori and kelp powder with the flour mixture, oil and a drizzle of beer.

Slowly add the rest of the beer while stirring until the batter is a thick-ish

pancake batter consistency.

FRYING THE “CALAMARI”

Heat a small pot with roughly 500ml – 700ml of sunflower oil to 180 degrees Celsius. Dunk a few of your mushroom rings into the batter. Cover them thoroughly.

Let the excess batter drip off and start adding to the oil. Add about 4-5 at a time. Adding more might result in the oil losing too much heat. Try to not have them stick together. Flip the rings constantly until golden brown. Remove from oil and place on a kitchen towel-lined plate or bowl to drain excess oil.

Repeat until you have cooked all the rings. They are best enjoyed fresh and crispy, so you might want to cook this last!

GETTING SAUCY (TARTAR)

Finely chop a teaspoon full of fresh dill and a 1/4 of gherkin. Mix all ingredients in a small bowl. Add salt to your liking.

You could experiment by adding chili for a bit of spice. Or even a little bit of dijon mustard will be nice! Now try not to eat your fingers off 🙂