Add a Spanish twist to your next supper with Ben Tish’s cuttlefish with squash, spicy nduja sausage & marjoram
Cuttlefish is relatively under-used in the UK, which is a real shame. Similar to squid, but perhaps a little more toothsome and with a richer, deeper flavour, it’s equally good cooked quickly over a high heat or slowly braised in a stew.
The Spaniards eat cuttlefish by the bucket-load… and they know their seafood. Ask your fishmonger to get some cuttlefish for you, and to clean it, separating the head and body – they’re usually delighted to help.
Failing that, some meaty, fresh squid will do the trick. Sweet squash, fiery nduja and herby marjoram complete the package here, making an excellent dish.
• 1/2 butternut squash
• 50g nduja or soft, spicy chorizo, skin removed
• 240g cuttlefish or squid, cleaned
• 1/2 lemon, juiced
• small handful marjoram leaves
• olive oil, for cooking
• sea salt
• black pepper
1 Remove any seeds from the squash, then cut it into quarters lengthwise.
2 Light the barbecue and set for direct/indirect cooking.
3 Rub the squash with olive oil and season, then place directly on the grill in the direct heat zone and cook for 2 minutes on each side to lightly char.
4 Transfer to the indirect heat zone, close the lid of the barbecue and cook for 25–30 minutes, checking and turning it every now and again until the squash is soft and tender.
5 Meanwhile, slowly heat the nduja in a small saucepan with a splash of water on the stovetop until it has just melted into a thick sauce. Keep warm.
6 When the squash is done, move it to the edge of the barbecue to keep warm. Check the charcoal is hot enough (it needs to be very hot to quickly sear the cuttlefish); if not, add a little more charcoal.
7 Cut the cuttlefish into chunks, drizzle with olive oil and season well. Place the cuttlefish directly on the grill in the direct zone and cook quickly for 2 minutes on each side to lightly char. Don’t cook for any longer, or it will become chewy.
8 Squeeze some lemon juice over the cuttlefish, then serve with the squash, some nduja sauce and a sprinkling of marjoram.
Recipe courtesy of Ben Tish, extracted from Grill Smoke BBQ. Photography via Kris Kirkham