• Japanese seven-spice calamari (Smith Street Books)Source: Smith Street Books

Pull together your own Japanese marinade featuring the classic ginger-soy power duo with a traditional Japanese spice mix to pack a punch.






Skill level

Average: 3.8 (10 votes)


  • 500 g (1 lb 2 oz) squid hoods, cleaned and cut into 2 cm (¾ in) rings, leave tentacles intact
  • 2 tbsp sesame seeds, toasted until golden
  • 2 spring onions (scallions), thinly sliced on the diagonal

Japanese marinade

  • 125 ml (4 fl oz/½ cup) light soy sauce
  • 5 cm (2 in) piece of ginger, peeled and finely grated (approximately 2 tbsp)
  • 3 tbsp mirin
  • 1 tbsp shichimi tōgarashi (see Note)
  • 1 tbsp peanut oil

Cook's notes

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.


To make the marinade, combine the ingredients in a large bowl. Reserve half the marinade for basting.

Add the squid to the remaining marinade and mix well to coat. Set aside in the refrigerator to marinate for 15 minutes.

Preheat a barbecue grill to high and lightly grease with oil.

Grill the squid, turning frequently and basting with reserved marinade, for 2–3 minutes until opaque and tender. Take care not to overcook the squid as it can quickly become rubbery.

Serve garnished with toasted sesame seeds and spring onions.



• Shichimi togarashi is a traditional Japanese seven-spice mix, predominately made up of red pepper, and is available from Asian supermarkets.


Recipe from Feed The Man Meat (Smith Street Books).