Quinoa and Shrimp Stuffed Squid Tagine

I barely had squid this summer, maybe once or twice. So I felt like making something fancy with it but also:

• easy

• tasty

• and healthy 

If you like squid and are interested in all the above this recipe is definitely for you!

This tagine seems sophisticated but it is incredibly easy to prepare. You can use rice or vermicelli instead of quinoa if you’d like. In my opinion quinoa is just a healthier option and I love its nutty taste.

Preparing this tagine is just a case of getting all the ingredients together and stuffing the cute little baby squids.

I made up the recipe while preparing it yesterday, it’s a tagine but to be honest this dish mainly tastes like a beautifully fragrant, sea food-y Mediterranean treat. Hope you enjoy it! 

Quinoa and shrimp stuffed squid tagine in tomato and bell pepper sauce

INDREDIENTS

Serves 5 to 6

TOMATO AND BELL PEPPER TAGINE

  • 3 medium sized onions (500 gr), sliced
  • 2 cans peeled tomato (400gr/14 oz.) or 10 ripe peeled tomatoes, chopped
  • 3 bell peppers, any colour, seeded and julienned
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh coriander and more for garnish 
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon salt, or more to taste
  • 1 teaspoon caster sugar to balance the acidity of the tomato sauce

STUFFED BABY SQUID

  • 400 gr cooked quinoa (130 gr uncooked)
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 150 gr shrimps, uncooked and chopped
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • ¾ teaspoon salt or more to taste
  • 16 baby squids, cleaned and tentacles removed (600 gr)
  • 16 wooden sticks for assembling 

METHOD

TOMATO AND BELL PEPPER TAGINE

• Transfer the olive oil and the onions in a large casserole over medium heat. Cover with a lid and stir occasionally, until the onions are soft and translucent, about 12 to 15 minutes.

• Add the remaining ingredients and lower the heat to medium low. Cover with a lid and let gently simmer for 50 minutes and until the bell peppers are soft and cooked.

• Set aside until the baby squids are ready to be cooked.

STUFFING AND COOKING THE BABY SQUIDS

• Cook the quinoa according the manufacturer’s instruction and set aside. 

• In a small pan, transfer 1 tablespoon olive oil and the chopped onion over medium heat. Cover with a lid until the onions are soft and translucent, about 8 to 10 minutes.

• Add the garlic to the pan and combine with the onions. Fry the onions and the garlic stirring occasionally for 5 minutes or until lightly golden.

• In a large bowl, transfer the cooked quinoa, cooked onions and garlic, chopped uncooked shrimp, 1 tablespoon olive oil, salt and lemon zest. Combine all the ingredients together. 

• With the help of a teaspoon, fill the baby squids with the stuffing to about two thirds. Make sure that the baby squids are well stuffed by pressing down the stuffing as you fill them up. Close the ends with wooden sticks.

• When ready to cook, transfer the stuffed squids in the tomato and bell pepper tagine over medium heat for 25 minutes. Cover with a lid and let simmer gently. Start checking if the squids are cooked after 20 minutes. Serve warm with lemon wedges and chopped coriander. 

Notes

• You can prepare the stuffing up to 2 days in advance.