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Klara's Squid Salad Recipe - Croatian Lignje na Salatu


Squid Salad

Squid Salad

© Flickr by Polarbear
This recipe for Croatian squid salad or lignje na salatu is from Klara Cvitanovich of New Orleans. Originally from Dubrovnik on the Dalmatian Coast of the northern Adriatic Sea, Cvitanovich enjoyed the fruits of the sea as a young child. This squid salad is one of the dishes she still serves for badnja vecer or Christmas Eve, which traditonally is a meatless meal.

Makes 12 servings of Croatian Squid Salad

Prep Time: 45 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 55 minutes


  • Squid:
  • 1 whole yellow onion, peeled
  • 2 bay leves
  • 4 peppercorns
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 5 pounds squid (fresh or frozen and thawed), thoroughly cleaned (see below)
  • Dressing:
  • 1 red onion, sliced into very thin rings
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
  • Salt and pepper to taste


How to Clean Squid: Working in a kitchen sink, hold the body of squid firmly in one hand. Grasp head firmly with the other hand and pull, twisting gently from side to side. Head and contents of body should come away in one piece. Cut tentacles off head and set aside. Discard head and contents of body. Grasp tip of pointed, thin, clear cartilage protruding from body, pull out and discard. Rinse squid under cold running water. Peel off and discard spotted outer membrane. Pull off side fins and set aside. Rinse inside of squid body thoroughly under running water to remove any grit or other matter.
Source: Louisiana Cookin', December 2005.
  1. Bring 3 quarts water to a boil in large stock pot. Add whole onion, bay leaves, peppercorns, salt, cleaned squid, and reserved tentacles and fins, and cook for about 5 minutes or just until squid is soft. Don't overcook! Drain and allow squid to cool to touch. Discard the poaching vegetables, tentacles and fins.

  2. To make the dressing: In a medium bowl, combine red onion, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper, and set aside.

  3. When squid is cool, slice into 1/4-inch rings and place in a lage bowl, Toss with dressing and allow to marinate in refrigerator 2 to 3 hours. Serve on a platter of greens. Squid salad is traditionally eaten with boiled potatoes and reserved marinade.
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