Fried Cajun spiced Derwent River calamari

by Jamison Godfrey

Every year the calamari and a bit later the arrow squid make their way up the Derwent River in the months of December through to March.

They are around before and after this but are most prolific at these times. They are great fun to target on light gear and are great cooked up fresh on the day. Rather than just having crumbed squid rings, I’ve added some Cajun spice for something different, great with a few beers and it’s really moorish.

Cajun Spice
2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1 teaspoon yellow mustard seeds ground
1 teaspoon white peppercorns ground
1 teaspoon black peppercorns ground
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon cumin seeds toasted and ground
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon oregano dried
1 teaspoon thyme leaves dried
2 calamari tubes cleaned and sliced
2 lemons
Egg wash
Plain flour
Panko bread crumbs
Oil for frying
Caper mayonnaise and sea salt to serve


To make the spice grind all the whole spices and mix in with the other spices and herbs and sit aside.

In a mixing bowl place the calamari rings in and sprinkle in some Cajun spice, then add the juice of one lemon, now mix well.

Place the calamari into the flour first, then the egg wash and lastly the panko crumbs.

Heat the oil to 170° and place the rings in and cook in batches, drain on paper towel.

Serve with some caper mayonnaise, sea salt and fresh lemon wedges.

This recipe is from award winning chef Jamison Godfrey of the Drunken Admiral restaurant in Hobart, Tasmania. If you’re ever in Hobart we highly recommend visiting the Drunken Admiral and sampling their delicious menu of seasonal, local produce for yourself.
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