Barbecued Calamari Salad

I grew up by the beach. For ten months of the year you could swim in the ocean, wear pretty sun-dresses, and eat alfresco. But my favorite time was the height of summer.

The days were long, the markets were over-flowing with fresh produce, and my father was a master of the barbecue. He’d gather the family for a late Sunday lunch and grill shrimp, octopus or calamari. My sisters and I would make the salads infused with fresh mint and basil while my brother would pull out his a guitar and attempt to be Eric Clapton, which he wasn’t.

Twenty years on, I’m still doing the same thing, just 10,000 miles from home, and with my urban family.

I’m sharing my father’s barbecued calamari recipe – the secret, a kiwi fruit marinade!


  • 3 calamari
  • juice of one lemon
  • 1 kiwi fruit, peeled
  • sea salt
  • 1 handful of wild arugula
  • 1 handful of organic spinach
  • 2 sprigs of fresh mint
  • 1/2 carrot grated
  • 6 baby tomatoes halved
  • 1/4 an avocado diced
  • handful of sprouts
  • 1 tbs extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbs lemon juice


Cut open the calamari so they’re lying flat on the board. Lightly score one side in a criss-cross pattern. Massage the kiwi fruit into the calamari, then cut into 2cm strips and place in a bowl. Squeeze the juice of one lemon over the calamari.

While the calamari is tenderizing, place the arugula, spinach, mint, carrot, avocado, tomato and sprouts in a large salad bowl. Toss and drizzled with olive oil, lemon juice and sea salt.

Once the calamari has softened (about 5 minutes), place it on the barbecue scored side down and let it cook for one minute and turn over to cook the other side. Once completely cooked, add the calamari to the salad. Enjoy!