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Charred Squid Salad with Mustard Greens and Roasted-Garlic Dressing

Here, chef Yoni Levy quick-sears pristine Monterey Bay squid and avocado, then tosses them with grapefruit sections and a rich roasted-garlic dressing.

  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 4

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  • 3 heads of garlic

  • 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

  • Kosher salt

  • 1 pink or Ruby Red grapefruit

  • 1 pound cleaned small squid, bodies quartered lengthwise and tentacles trimmed

  • 1 large avocado, halved and pitted

  • 4 cups baby mustard greens

  • 1/4 cup thinly sliced radishes

  • 1/4 cup roasted almonds, chopped


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°. On a sheet of aluminum foil, drizzle the garlic heads with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Wrap tightly and roast for about 1 hour, until the garlic is very soft; let cool. Halve the garlic crosswise and squeeze the garlic cloves out of the skins into a small bowl. Add 3 tablespoons of the olive oil and mash to a paste; whisk in 2 tablespoons of the lemon juice and season with salt.
  2. Meanwhile, finely grate 1 teaspoon of grapefruit zest. Using a sharp knife, cut the skin and all of the bitter white pith off of the grapefruit. Working over a medium bowl, cut in between the membranes to release the sections; discard the membranes and stir in the zest.
  3. Heat a large cast-iron griddle with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Add half of the squid and cook over high heat, turning once, until golden in spots and just white throughout, about 1 minute. Transfer the squid to a large bowl. Repeat with 1 more tablespoon of the olive oil and the remaining squid.
  4. Wipe off the griddle and add 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Add the avocado, cut side down, and cook over high heat until nicely charred, about 1 minute. Scoop out the avocado and thinly slice it.
  5. Add the avocado, mustard greens and 1/2 cup of the roasted-garlic dressing to the squid and toss; reserve the remaining garlic dressing for another use. Season with salt. Transfer to plates.
  6. In a small bowl, toss the radishes with the almonds and remaining 1 tablespoon each of lemon juice and olive oil; season with salt. Top the salads with the radishes and almonds and serve.

Suggested Pairing

Zippy, citrusy Sauvignon Blanc.

Photo © Alanna Hale Published June 2014

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