to receive unadvertised email only offers!
Squid, also known as Monga Ika, rivals the scallop in simplicity of preparation and unique, fresh taste. This high protein, chewy meat releases rich flavors and becomes creamy as you chew. Ika is translucent to white in color, and very firm. Nigiri or sashimi is the recommended preparation for squid, another of SushiNut’s fine choices for homemade sushi.
This sustainable sea creature reproduces prolifically and matures to harvest size within one year. The squid most commonly captured for sushi are less than 12 inches in length, and shaped like a spear head with two fins and short tentacles. Harvesting Ika at this size ensures the meat doesn’t get too tough. Squid is known in the west as cuttlefish. Squid are found in oceans worldwide, and commercially harvested in the Atlantic and Asian waters. Sushi chefs use the hood or mantle of squid for Ika sashimi and sushi. Nearly every part of squid is edible, and you will see ink broth as well as stewed squid tentacles offered in Japanese sushi establishments.
Monga Ika is the most rigid of sushi fish meat, and requires a bit of creativity to shape and adhere it to the seasoned rice ball of nigiri. A few shallow lengthwise cuts makes the meat more flexible and able to hold the required arc shape. The concentric muscle fibers of squid must be cut across the grain to avoid making Ika gummy. Scoring the squid is common for the same reason.
Japanese don’t waste any edibles, and will poach squid tentacles for a treat called Ika geso, or serve them boiled and brushed with nitsume, nigiri style. Other methods of serving squid are stewing, grilling (either plain or stuffed), and frying as calamari or tempura. Try your hand at this sashimi variation: slice into very thin noodles and serve with a miso or shoyu dipping broth.
Squid may not appeal to some, as it is quite stiff compared to most sushi fish. Be prepared to chew Ika longer than other sushi fish. Your work will be rewarded as texture changes from slightly rubbery to creamy, and the sweet flavor intensifies the more it is chewed. One ounce serving of Monga Ika sashimi contains 26 calories, less than half a gram of fat, and 4.4 grams of protein.
Our sashimi squid is sourced from Thailand. We recommend using your Monga Ika within 30 days for best flavor.