Garlicky Squid in Olive Oil

In surviving this Covid-19 crisis, we have to draw a clear line between wants and needs, set a budget, and adjust spending as millions of households are wondering how they will cope with a big drop in income because of measures prompted by the Corona virus pandemic.

A spare from last week's budget after all my household spending, I was able to afford "Pusit" or squid from a tour-guide neighbour turned fishermen who was also offering home deliveries. Wholesale buyers and tourists are gone and demand affectedly plummeted, squid price dropped from Php 350 a kilo (pre-lockdown) to Php 180.

With just few ingredients and my freestyle, unapologetic cooking skills, this is by far, my ultimate quarantine dish: Squid in Olive Oil and Garlic.

750g fresh squid, skinned, cleaned and sliced into rings
2 heads garlic, 1 head slightly crushed, 1 head cut
¼ cup olive oil
2 tsp fish sauce
2 tbsp lemon juice
4 pcs. bay leaf
1 tsp black ground pepper
1 tbsp peppercorn
chili flakes (optional)


Sprinkle whole garlic with olive oil and salt and roast in the oven until brown and aromatic.

Heat olive oil and garlic in a pan until olive oil is fragrant and garlic is brown on the edges.

Set heat to medium and add sliced squid and pour in fish sauce. 

Add bay leaf, pepper and peppercorn. 

Stir-Fry for about 15 to 20 minutes until squid is tender. Make sure you don't over-cook it.

Add lemon juice and give it a quick stir before turning off heat.

Transfer to a serving dish and garnish with roasted garlic.

Serve with steamed rice