There’s not much that I’ve really missed since turning vegan. After the first month all my cheese, milk and most of my meat cravings had completely subsided. I did miss BBQ ribs, but I created a vegan version pretty early on. The other thing I really missed was calamari!
The other day I was eating some pasta that I had made using oyster mushrooms I’d bought cheap at the supermarket. I’d over-cooked them and turned them chewy… which is when the idea of using them to create calamari came to me.
You’re only an easy recipe away from crispy, delicious yumminess! Unfortunately I couldn’t figure out a way to make rings, but the taste and texture is totally there!
Ingredients (makes 2 portions):
2 x tbsp. gram flour
2 x tbsp. cold water
0.5 x tsp bicarbonate of soda
0.5 x tsp apple cider vinegar
60 g oyster mushrooms (bigger the better)
200x ml cold water
2 x tsp salt
1 x tsp kelp powder
1 x tbsp. flour
2 x tbsp. breadcrumbs
Pre-heat a deep fat fryer to 190oC.
Whisk together the gram flour, 2 tbsp. water, bicarb and apple cider vinegar to make a thick batter. Leave to one side.
Slice the oyster mushrooms into approx. ½ cm wide strips.
Put the 200 ml of water into a small pan with the kelp powder and salt. Add the mushrooms and heat over the hob. Bring to the boil then reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes (This makes the mushrooms a bit chewier so they have more of a bite).
Drain the mushrooms using a sieve. Once cool enough to handle, it’s best to pick the mushrooms out of the sieve and lay on a piece of kitchen roll a) to drain them and b) so they don’t end up coated in too much mushy kelp powder. Bleurgh!
Coat the mushrooms in the plain flour before dipping in the batter until evenly coated. Then roll in the breadcrumbs until again evenly coated.
Deep fry at 190oC for 5 minutes or until golden brown.
Scoop out, drain and put on a bit of kitchen roll to absorb some of the oil.
Serve! I mixed together some fresh lemon juice with a squirt of vegan mayo to make a tasty dip.