Fried Calamari Crostini

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Chef's Table > small plates

Cayenne pepper gives Chrystal and Amir's batter a hot and fiery kick—a perfect counterpart to the silky buttermilk and heavy cream.
Chrystal & Amir
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  • Serves 4
  • |
  • prep time: 20 minutes
  • |
  • cook time: 25 minutes
  • 3 cups vegetable oil
  • 1 lb. calamari (mix of squid tentacles and bodies cut into rings)
  • ½ cup breadcrumbs
  • ½ cup flour
  • 3 Tbsp. fresh parsley, minced
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ½ tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 6 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 5 Tbsp. fresh rosemary leaves, chopped
  • 2 oz. anchovies, in oil
  • Juice of ½ a lemon
  • 3 Tbsp. olive oil
  • ½ small loaf ciabatta bread, cut into ½-in. slices and toasted
  • 1 cup Bertolli® Marinara Sauce
  • 2 Tbsp. heavy cream
1. Pour the vegetable oil in medium pot and set over medium high heat. While oil heats, combine the flour, breadcrumbs, cayenne, parsley, lemon zest and salt until well mixed. Set aside.

2. In a small food processor, add the garlic, rosemary, anchovies, lemon zest and olive oil. Blend until smooth. Set aside.

3. In a small saucepan, stir together the Marinara Sauce and heavy cream. Set over low heat and warm through.

4. Once the vegetable oil is hot, dip the calamari into the buttermilk, then coat with breadcrumb mixture. Fry in batches for approximately 2-3 minutes per batch or until browned and crispy. Remove and set on a paper towel-covered plate to drain.

5. Spread a thin layer of anchovy mixture on the bread and top with a few pieces of warm calamari. Drizzle with creamy marinara sauce.

Serve remaining sauce on the side for dipping.