Stuffed Cuttlefish Pugliese style, with a bread filling.
One of the great things about Puglia is that it truly celebrates the cuisine of the sea. Cuttlefish not only taste delicious, lend themselves well to stuffing but are also an economical way to enjoy the fruits of the sea. You could use this fairly simple recipe on the family but it will also impress your new boss or the commodore from your local yacht club should you invite them to dinner.
This recipe will serve approximately 6 people
6 Large cuttlefish.
1kg potatoes, peeled and thickly sliced.
120gm mild pecorino cheese, grated.
120gm bread crumbs.
3 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped.
1 small bunch Italian parsley, finely chopped.
Salt & pepper to taste.
Opzionale: 1 salted anchovy fillet and a few salted capers.
If you have bought whole cuttlefish they will need to be thoroughly cleaned by removing the eyes, beaks, bones and all the gooey innards. This can be made easier if it is done under gently running water.
Remove the heads and tentacles and chop them finely.
Heat your oven to 180°.
Beat the eggs in a bowl and combine most of the bread crumbs, parsley and cheese. Add all of the garlic.
If you are including the anchovy fillet crumble it and add, if you are including the capers rinse them, chop them and add them.
Season the mixture with salt and pepper to taste, add a tablespoon or two of olive oil and mix well.
Carefully spoon the mixture into the cavities of the cuttlefish bodies and seal them with toothpicks.
Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of lightly salted water in the bottom of a roasting pan large enough to hold the cuttlefish with a little space between them.
Line the pan with a layer of potato slices, lay each cuttlefish over the potato, sprinkle the chopped tentacles between them and cover with the final layer of potato slices.
Sprinkle the remaining cheese, parsley and bread crumbs over the top, season with salt and pepper, drizzle another tablespoon of water and a table spoon or two of olive oil over the whole thing and you're ready to bake.
Bake for about an hour until golden goodness appears, checking from time to time and covering with foil if need be.
The perfect wine to wash down this dish is Falanghina by Antica Enotria, you will need plenty of it...