20 Feb2006

Dried Squid

by Marketman


Grilling dried squid lets off some of the strongest food odors I have ever experienced. Good grief, talk about pungent food! Our crew at home considers this a special treat whenever I come back from Bohol so I have taken to buying it by the kilo, having my suki vacuum pack it and checking it into the hold of a nice 737 jet hoping it won’t smell up some other passenger’s fake Louis Vuitton luggage. There seems to be no secret to the dried squid…take some fresh medium sized squid and de-gut it, dry under the hot sun until flat and totally dehydrated and either grill it on a hot fire or fry it up in lots of vegetable oil… But the taste and texture are memorable and thus it is welcomed with smiles after long periods of dried squid famine…

It is, in my opinion, dry, stringy, tough, chewy and a perfect sponge for good vinegar or chilli sauce but I am not one of its more avid fans. Actually, I remember eating this as a kid and thought it was more like a bad-tasting gum than an actual source of protein… I love dried danggit but can’t get too into the dried squid. At any rate, it ain’t cheap stuff…at close to PHP600+ a kilo in the Bohol Central market (about PHP900 a kilo by the time you reach the Cebu airport) it is pricier than dried fish, but a little does go a really long way.



  1. oscar says:

    There’s a roomful of errors when cooking dried squid. It’s more of an art than a science.

    It is recommended that you fry them for a very short time in very hot oil–we call this “ginulat na pusit” otherwise you get a charred sheet of carbon, or a–yes, a bad-tasting gum.

    Feb 20, 2006 | 11:31 pm


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  3. peng says:

    Once i cooked dry squid inside the house and my husband who isn’t filipino smell the stinky odour thougth we have a dead rat in the house, until i explain it isn’t a dead rat but a cooked dry squid! I know he does’t like to hurt my feeling but that day our house was a little colder as he secretly opening some windows upstair in the middle of winter. The next day he bought a BBQ grill with a burner on the side so i can cook smelly stuff outside. Well at least he didn’t asked me to stop eating it. All my friends think that was funny. They can laughed all they want but i still going to eat dry squid and other smelly dried fish.

    Feb 20, 2006 | 11:35 pm

  4. sha says:

    I laughed at Peng’s story..M doesnt mind me frying
    But he really cant stand the smell
    Candles, open windows do not help much
    so when I fry dried squid M is out but he doesnt mind me eating it in front of him

    as Oscar suggests I do the same
    the oil must be hot! so you dont get a rubbery squid

    Feb 21, 2006 | 5:41 am

  5. ajb says:

    Hehe, makes me think of the time I lugged 20 lb half of a jackfruit as carry-on from from Iloilo to Manila. I don’t think anyone noticed the smell!

    Feb 21, 2006 | 7:19 am

  6. Hchie says:

    Champorado and crispy fried dried “lucos” makes a good combination.

    Feb 21, 2006 | 8:03 am

  7. bogchief says:

    I’ve seen street vendors cook this by throwing it on a pile of hot coal. I think they score the sides a bit to keep them from curling up. When cooked, it’s cut into bite sized strips and served with sweet-chili sauce. Good with beer.

    Feb 21, 2006 | 5:10 pm

  8. bayi & ssk says:

    Grilled dried squid tastes wonderful, especially with some chili sauce. However, the smell from one’s mouth leaves much to be desired. Bless you, if you are caught in a packed cinema and the guy seated next to you eats grilled squid. Makes you all queasy and want to throw up. Somehow the smell of one eating dried squid, combined with the air-conditioning multiplies the pungent odor beyond words.

    Feb 21, 2006 | 8:04 pm

  9. Brian says:

    My fiancee loves the dried squid and I must admit that although I am not too keen on the texture, I do like the smell. Actually, I am the one who grills it most of the time, as she is pregnant and the smells of cooking bother her. We are in America now and am wondering if anyone knows the exact process for making the dried squid??? Fresh squid is readily available here, but dried is not. Any help would be appreciated. Salamat po!


    Aug 10, 2007 | 1:02 pm


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