'Rabas' are a popular seaside snack in Argentina, served with salsa golf - a sauce born of a Nobel-prize winning scientist combining mayonnaise and tomato sauce.
- 1 kg (2 lb 3 oz) small calamari hoods, cleaned and rinsed
- 375 g (13 oz/2½ cups) plain (all-purpose) flour
- 2 tsp cornflour (cornstarch)
- ½ tsp baking powder
- sea salt
- 500 ml (17 fl oz/2 cups) lager
- vegetable oil, for deep-frying
- lemon wedges, to serve (optional)
- 3 tbsp tomato sauce (ketchup)
- 3 tbsp mayonnaise
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Sitting time: 30 minutes
1. Pat the calamari dry with paper towel, then slice the hoods into 5mm (¼ in) wide rings.
2. To make the golf sauce, combine the tomato sauce and mayonnaise in a bowl, then set aside in the fridge for the flavours to infuse.
3. Combine 300 g (10½ oz/2 cups) of the flour, the cornflour, baking powder and a generous pinch of sea salt in a medium bowl. Stir through the lager to make a smooth and thick batter. Set aside for about 30 minutes.
4. Half-fill a large saucepan with vegetable oil and place over medium–high heat. Drop a pinch of flour into the oil; if it sizzles on contact the oil is ready.
5. Tip the remaining flour into a bowl. Working in batches of 10–12 calamari rings at a time, toss the rings in the flour, then shake off the excess and dip them in the batter to coat. Carefully lower the rings into the hot oil and cook for 2–3 minutes, until golden. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towel to drain. Repeat with the remaining calamari.
6. Transfer the calamari rings to a serving platter and sprinkle with a little extra salt. Serve with the golf sauce on the side and lemon wedges if you like.
Recipe from The Food of Argentina by Ross Dobson and Rachel Tolosa Paz, Smith Street Books, RRP $44.99