Salt & Pepper Calamari with Lime Aioli paired with Cape of Good Hope Groendruif

A freshly fried tender piece of calamari with a thin crispy coating is one of the most popular summer indulgences. With an added dollop of garlic-infused lime mayonnaise, this is a match made in heaven for the bright and crisp Cape of Good Hope Groendruif, a wine made from semillon grapes.

This recipe serves 4 as a light meal.


1/2 cup self-raising flour

1 tablespoon corn flour

1 teaspoon salt flakes (or 1/2 teaspoon table salt)

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

500 g baby calamari tubes & tentacles, cleaned & rinsed

canola oil, for frying

lime wedges, for serving


2 egg yolks

30 ml (2 tablespoons) lime juice (or 50/50% lemon and lime juice)

10 ml (2 teaspoons) Dijon mustard

1 clove garlic, finely grated

a pinch of salt

about 125 ml canola oil


Make the aioli first:

Place the yolks, lime juice, mustard, garlic and salt in a tall cup.

Using a stick blender, blend well.

With the motor of the blender running, add the oil in a thin stream, continuing to blend until you have a thick, pale mayonnaise.

Cover and set aside (or refrigerate if made ahead).

For the calamari:

Place the self-raising flour, corn flour, salt & pepper in a wide bowl and stir to mix.

Slice the calamari tubes into rounds of about 1cm thickness, then toss the rings and the tentacles in the seasoned flour (do it in 3-4 batches) until it is well coated.

Heat the oil (about 4 cm deep) in a medium pot over medium-high heat.

When the oil is hot enough (test a piece of calamari in the oil to see if it sizzles), but not smoking, carefully add the coated calamari in batches and fry until golden (about 3-4 minutes).

Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper.

Serve hot, sprinkled with more salt & pepper, with the aioli and lime wedges. Use crusty bread to mop up the fragrant sauce.

And don’t forget the Groendruif!




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