Sautéed Squid with Leeks and Shishito Peppers

As much as I wanted this to be a slow, relaxing summer, I knew that work would get in the way. And now, here we are, already in July. Our weekends are booked up and now almost every day involves a shoot. Instead of being disappointed by the lack of downtime, we are starting to plan ahead to this fall and winter and are looking to take another vacation around the holidays. We went to Hawaii last year and it was a magical ten days. As much as we love culture and exploring cities, the best part of that trip was relaxing by the pool. We've been talking for years about doing the all-inclusive (and "adults only") thing. An island resort with nothing to do but read, eat, and drink (I gained five pounds in Hawaii so I can only imagine what this trip will do to me). So, that's the direction we're looking in (we're totally open to suggestions if people have them... thinking Cancun, the DR, maybe Turks and Caicos). 

Squid is one of those ingredients I seldom work with. I'll order it anytime it's on a menu, but cooking at home never occurs to me. I did find myself purchasing a few pounds the other week (an impulse buy), along with shishito peppers (which, until this recipe, I had never prepared) and a bunch of leeks. I fired up the wok (one of my favorite kitchen implements) for this dish. It's not a complicated recipe, but it does pack a ton of flavor.  

Sautéed Squid with Leeks and Shishito Peppers

Serves 4

2 pounds cleaned squid, a mixture of tentacles and bodies, bigger tentacles cut in half, the bodies cut into 1/2" rings
1 bunch washed leeks, light green and white parts only, sliced into thin rings
8 ounces shishito peppers, stems removed
2 teaspoons of fresh minced ginger
1 teaspoon minced garlic
Olive oil
Soy sauce
Sesame oil
Red pepper flakes

1. Place 1 tablespoon of olive over in a wok or large skillet set over high heat. Heat for 1 minute. Add the leeks and cook for 1 minute. Add shishito peppers and stir to combine. Cook for another 2-3 minutes, until the peppers begin to blister. Transfer peppers and leeks to a bowl.

2. Return the pan to the stove and set over medium-high heat. Pour in 1 tablespoon olive oil and let it heat up for 1 minute. Add squid to the pan, and drizzle 1 tablespoon of soy sauce over them. Cook, without touching them, for one minute. Add minced ginger and garlic. Flip over squid and cook for another 1-2 minutes.

3. Add the cooked peppers and leeks to the pan with the squid and toss to combine. Drizzle 2 teaspoons sesame oil over them and sprinkle 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes on top.