Grilled and roasted squid (and cuttlefish) is sold by street vendors throughout Korea. Roasting whole squid might not be your typical kitchen move, but this recipe is easier than roasting a chicken, and so distinctly Korean with the union of gochujang (funk), gochugaru (heat), mirin (sweetness), soy sauce (umami!) and the tender meatiness of squid. We love this spicy marinade because it caramelizes really nicely under high heat. For this, buy your squid whole, as opposed to presliced. It will likely be fresher, and cooking it whole allows for a nice caramelization without overcooking. You should ask your fishmonger for whole large squid, cleaned with the legs reserved.
For the marinade
- 2 tablespoons gochujang
- 1 tablespoon finely ground gochugaru
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 tablespoons Korean rice or corn syrup
- ¼ cup soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons mirin
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
For the squid
- 2 whole large squids
- (1 to 1½ pounds each), cleaned
- 1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds
- 2 scallions, thinly sliced
- PREPARE THE MARINADE: In a large bowl, combine all the marinade ingredients and whisk together until fully combined.
- PREPARE THE SQUID: Cut each squid’s body in ¼-inch intervals, cutting through the top of the body but not slicing all the way through to make rings. Add the bodies and the legs to the marinade, making sure the marinade coats the bodies thoroughly inside and out. Allow the squid to marinate for at least 1 hour in the refrigerator, though overnight is best.
- Preheat the oven to 500°F.
- Take the squid out of the marinade and remove as much of the marinade from the squid as you can. Drop the squid into an oven-safe pan, place it on the middle baking rack and roast for 6 to 8 minutes. The squid is done when the flesh becomes opaque and is firm to the touch. Slice fully through and serve with sesame seeds and scallions sprinkled on top.