Arroz Negro

When life gives you squid ink, make arroz negro – that’s the proverb. Well, really, in this case, it was ‘when life gives you squid ink, make squid ink linguine, then leave the rest of the ink in the fridge for a while, think about what you’re going to do with it, forget it’s in the fridge, let a few days lapse, remember you still have the squid ink, spend an afternoon at work procrastinating and thinking about recipes, and then make arroz negro.’


1 tbsp squid ink

1 400g can tomatoes, crushed

Caster sugar


1 red capsicum, cut into a small dice

1 brown onion

1.5 litres of fish stock

2 large squid, cleaned and sliced into rings

200g calasparra rice

2 large scampi, sliced lengthwise

4-5 cloves of garlic, chopped

1 cup of white wine




Heat a splash of olive oil in a small saucepan, then add the tomato and simmer for 10 minutes or so, until thick. Add some sugar and salt to taste, along with a pinch of pepper and paprika.

In a separate pan, heat some oil, then add the onion, garlic and capsicum and saute for 10-15 minutes, until softened. Add the rice and toast for a couple of minutes. Add the white wine and reduce by half, then add the tomato.

Bring the fish stock to the boil, then reduce to a simmer. Add a cup to the rice mixture along with the squid ink and stir to combine. Heat over a low heat, shaking the pan occasionally, and adding more fish stock as necessary. When the rice is almost tender, add the squid, pushing it into the rice, then continue to cook for another couple of minutes. Cover and set aside for a few minutes for the squid to continue cooking.

Heat some oil over a medium heat, add the scampi and cook for a minute or so on either side.

Spoon some of the arroz negro on to a plate, top with the scampi, throw some parsley on top and serve with a wedge of lemon.



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