Created using a variety of seasonings, batters and marinades, calamari is a Greek dish used as a snack, an appetizer or part of a main dish. One commonality among all calamari variations, however, is the process through which they are cooked — deep fried. The darkly golden brown color and crunchy texture of calamari comes from being immersed in oil for a short period of time. After cooking, how long the calamari can be stored depends on the method and the desired texture.


Serving

Consume within 2 hours of cooking, as seafood should not be allowed to come to room temperature after cooking without refrigeration. Pat all the oil off of the squid after frying to keep the calamari crunchy.

Refrigeration

Chill the cooked calamari for 3 to 4 days in the refrigerator. Ensure that the fridge is set to 40 degrees Fahrenheit or below, as temperatures any higher can encourage bacterial growth. Wrap in food-safe plastic wrap, pressing out any excess air, or place in a airtight container, before placing in the fridge. The airtight container will maintain the texture of the calamari better than plastic wrap, as it will keep it from being compressed.

Freezing

Wrap the calamari in food-safe plastic wrap, pressing out any excess air, before placing in a sealable plastic freezer bag. Portion into desired amounts before wrapping so portions can be removed and reheated. Ensure that the freezer is set at 0 degrees F or below to keep the calamari from spoiling. Store in the freezer for up to 3 months for optimum freshness. Reheat by spreading on an aluminum foil-covered baking sheet and baking at 400 F for 8 to 10 minutes.

Considerations

Cook squid only until brown when deep frying, as any longer can turn the squid chewy. Substitute conch or abalone for squid in calamari recipes, and store in the same manner as squid. Calamari can also be reheated using a microwave oven, however, only use short bursts of heat, 1 minute at a time, and make sure that the calamari does not become overcooked as it will turn chewy.