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This Squid and Celery Stir Fry is a classic that is sure to please. It is quick, easy, and tasty. Perfect for busy weeknights.
Squid and Celery Stir Fry is a perennial favorite of the informal “red tablecloth” restaurants in Malaysia. Most restaurants cook this dish well and can whip up in literally minutes, about seven at the most. Any longer and it will be overcooked.
Squid and Celery Stir Fry in Two Parts
For the home cook, it is best to tackle this stir fry in two parts. First, sear the celery and remove it from the wok. Then cook the squid and return the seared celery to the wok. Add the seasonings and the dish is all done!
Most people use oyster sauce for the seasoning but as a matter of preference, I do not. It’s been a while since I last used oyster sauce in my cooking. Instead, I used soy sauce and Shao Hsing cooking wine for a lighter taste. I also added a fresh red chili to give the dish some heat and color. You can also use dried red pepper flakes to make it even more spicy if you wish.
How to Prepare the Squid
For the signature “curled” look, remember to score the squid flesh on the inside because squids curl inside out. Apart from the presentation, another reason for wanting to do that is because squid flesh taste more springy and succulent when curled. It does not take up a lot of time to score the flesh if the squids are large. Alternatively, if you are using small squids, you can cut them into rings.
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Squid and Celery Stir Fry
- Cut celery sticks at a diagonal into ¼ inch thick slices. Cut open the fleshy part of the squid. Score the inside with a criss-cross pattern and cut into 1 inch strips.
- Heat a large wok over high heat. Add 1 tablespoon vegetable oil. Swirl the oil around in the wok. Add celery and stir fry for 2 to 3 minutes until it is fragrant and bright green in color. Remove and set aside.
- Add remaining vegetable oil to the wok. Stir fry red chili and garlic for 30 seconds.
- Add squid and stir fry for 1 minute.
- Add cooked celery, soy sauce, Shao Hsing cooking wine, pepper, and salt. Continue to stir fry for another 2 minutes or until squids curl.
- Pour in cornstarch mixture. Stir fry until sauce thickens, about 30 seconds. Turn off the stove.
- Transfer to a dish and serve immediately with steamed rice.
All you need with this tasty Squid and Celery Stir Fry is a bowl of steamed rice. Be sure to have that ready before you fire up the wok.