Beyond Calamari: Unveiling The Delicious Versatility Of Cuttlefish

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Cuttlefish, sometimes referred to as sea chameleons for their quick color-changing abilities, are a fascinating cephalopod with a surprisingly delicious flavor. Often overshadowed by their squid and octopus cousins, cuttlefish offer a unique texture and subtle sweetness that shines in this recipe for Cuttlefish Caponata.

This dish combines the tender meat of the cuttlefish with a vibrant mix of Mediterranean vegetables, creating a flavorful and colorful meal. It’s perfect for a light lunch, appetizer, or even a main course when paired with a side of crusty bread.

Chargrilled garlic and chilli cuttlefish
Chargrilled garlic and chilli cuttlefish


1 pound cuttlefish, cleaned and sliced into rings

  • 1/2 cup chopped red onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped kalamata olives
  • 1/4 cup chopped capers, drained
  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

  • Instructions:

    1. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onions, celery, and bell pepper. Sauté for 5-7 minutes, or until softened.

    2. Increase the heat to medium-high and add the cuttlefish rings. Cook for 3-4 minutes, stirring frequently, until the cuttlefish is opaque and slightly browned.

    3. Stir in the diced tomatoes, olives, capers, red wine vinegar, oregano, salt, and pepper. Bring to a simmer and cook for 10-15 minutes, or until the flavors have melded and the sauce has thickened slightly.

    4. Remove from heat and stir in the fresh parsley.

    5. Serve warm over a bed of rice or couscous, or enjoy it on its own as an appetizer.

    Nutrition Facts:

    (Per serving)

    Calories: 250

  • Fat: 10g
  • Saturated Fat: 2g
  • Cholesterol: 50mg
  • Sodium: 400mg
  • Carbohydrates: 20g
  • Fiber: 2g
  • Sugar: 5g
  • Protein: 25g

  • Note: These nutrition facts are estimates only and may vary depending on the specific ingredients used.


    Cuttlefish Caponata is a delightful dish that offers a unique and flavorful seafood experience. It’s easy to prepare, packed with nutrients, and sure to impress your guests. So, next time you’re looking for a new and exciting seafood recipe, give cuttlefish a try!

    Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

    1. Can I substitute another type of seafood for the cuttlefish?

    Absolutely! Shrimp, scallops, or even firm white fish like cod or haddock would work well in this recipe. Just be sure to adjust the cooking time accordingly.

    2. What if I don’t have kalamata olives?

    You can use another type of olive, such as black or green olives, or simply omit them altogether. The capers will still provide a nice salty flavor.

    3. How can I make this dish vegetarian?

    Simply omit the cuttlefish and add another cup of chopped vegetables, such as zucchini or eggplant. You can also add a can of chickpeas for extra protein.

    4. What is the best way to clean cuttlefish?

    There are a few different ways to clean cuttlefish. The easiest method is to ask your fishmonger to clean it for you. However, if you’re cleaning it yourself, you’ll need to remove the head, beak, and internal organs. There are many online tutorials that can walk you through the process step-by-step.

    5. How long will leftovers keep?