Fried Squid, Papaya, And Frisee Salad With Spicy-Sour Dressing
- SQUID AND BATTER:
- 1 1/2 pounds frozen cleaned small squid thawed, drained (bodies and tentacles; or 1 pound fresh)
- 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour divided
- 1 1/2 cups rice flour* divided
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon unseasoned rice vinegar
- 1 teaspoon peanut oil
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 1/4 cups water or more if needed
- Vegetable oil for deep-frying
- 4 cups frisée lettuce - (abt 2 heads)
- 2 cups cubed (1/2") peeled seeded fresh papaya
- 1/2 cup whole roasted salted cashews
- 6 fresh water chestnuts peeled, and thinly sliced into rounds
- 1/3 cup thin strips of peeled fresh ginger
- Spicy-Sour Dressing (see recipe)
- Toasted sesame seeds as needed
* Available at some supermarkets, specialty foods stores, and natural foods stores.
For Squid And Batter: Cut squid bodies into 1/2-inch-thick rounds. Place all squid in large sieve set over bowl. Refrigerate at least 1 hour to drain well.
Place 1 cup flour, 1 cup rice flour, soy sauce, vinegar, peanut oil, and sugar in large bowl. Gradually add 1 1/4 cups water, whisking until batter is smooth. If necessary, whisk in more water by teaspoonfuls until batter reaches heavy cream consistency. Let batter stand at least 1 hour and up to 3 hours at room temperature, whisking occasionally.
Mix remaining 1/2 cup flour and 1/2 cup rice flour in large bowl. Add squid. Toss until squid is coated, separating pieces. Turn mixture into another sieve and shake off excess flour. Sprinkle squid generously with salt, tossing in sieve. Mix coated squid into batter.
Pour oil into heavy large saucepan to depth of 1 1/2 inches. Attach clip-on deep-fry thermometer and heat oil over medium-high heat to 350 degrees to 360 degrees. Working in batches and stirring often with tongs to separate pieces, drop squid into oil. Fry until crisp and brown, about 4 minutes per batch. Using slotted spoon, transfer squid to paper towels. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
For Salad: Combine frisée, papaya, cashews, water chestnuts, and ginger in large bowl. Add enough dressing to coat lightly. Divide salad among plates, mounding in center.
Pile squid atop salad on each plate. Sprinkle with sesame seeds. Serve, passing remaining dressing separately.
This recipe yields 6 small servings.
Market Tip: Fresh water chestnuts are sold at Asian markets. If unavailable, use a large melon baller to cut out spheres of jicama, then slice into rounds.
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