Home » Ingredient » Seafood » Squid Stir Fry {Traditional Chinese Style}

Squid Stir Fry {Traditional Chinese Style}

Classic Chinese You Yu Juan {鱿鱼卷} or You Yu Hua {鱿鱼花}

by HomeNaturallyMade
Published: Last Updated on
squid stir fry Chinese Style

Squid Stir Fry is a traditional and classic Chinese food. Commonly known as squid rolls, or You Yu Juan {鱿鱼卷}. Sometimes people also call it squid flowers, or You Yu Hua {鱿鱼花}. This is because squid, scored with diamond cut in a lattice pattern, curled up into a bite-size roll during the cooking that looks like a flower. Absolutely delicious and satisfying.

By the way, this cutting technique is popular in Chinese cuisine. For example, another well-liked food Sauteed Kidneys also called Kidney flowers for the same reason.

squid stir fry Chinese Style

How to cut squid for squid rolls or squid flowers stir fry?

You might be wondering how to cut squid so that they curl up into a squid flower roll for this delicious squid stir fry. Tell you what, it is not as hard as you might think.

Firstly, once you have fully cleaned the squid, cut the squid tube open and lay it flat on the cutting board, with the interior part facing up. It is a bit easier to score the inside vs. the surface of the squid.

Secondly, pat dries the squid and then use a sharp knife to lightly but firmly slice it at any angle in parallel lines. Then do it again, this time across the line forming a diamond shape, thus all lines form a lattice pattern.

Lightly means do not cut through, firmly means you do need to make a mark. If you can cut it into about half of the depth of the squid tube thickness, that would be wonderful.

score the score with diamond cut into a lattice pattern for squid stir fry dish

Lastly, cut the squid vertically along the center line, and then cut across into bite-size rectangles. These small rectangles will curl up inward along the short sides of the rectangles with the lattice pattern exposed.

cut the lattice scored squid into bite-size rectangles

Alternatively, you can make a Squid Rings Stir Fry

If you are not up to doing the scoring, no worries at all. You can still make a delicious Squid Rings Stir Fry using the same ingredients. To make the squid tastier, I sear the squid first before slicing it into rings. It almost tastes like grilled squid.

Read here for a detailed recipe.

Stir Fried Squid {Simple Chinese Tie Ban You Yu 铁板鱿鱼}
Squid Rings Stir Fry {Simple Chinese Tie Ban You Yu 铁板鱿鱼}

How to clean the whole squid?

If you happen to have access to frozen whole squid in your local grocery stores, as I do, you can get the whole squid and clean it by yourself. It is quite straightforward to do so.

First is to leave the frozen squid in the refrigerator until they are fully thawed, and then pull the head part out and get rid of the innards. The last is to peel the skin off. Read here for a detailed step-by-step tutorial.

Clean Whole Squid {Easy and Efficient}
Clean Whole Squid {Easy and Efficient}

How to make a delicious Chinese Style Squid Roll Stir Fry?

Tip No.1 is to blanch the squid pieces briefly

Bring a pot of water to boil and then add the squid pieces. Use a stainless steel strainer to fold all the squid pieces with water, about 30 seconds and then immediately remove them from the water. Do not over blanching them, otherwise they will taste rubbery.

briefly blanched squid for stir fry

Tip No.2 is to season the squid stir fry properly

Ginger, garlic and red onion sauted together make a delicious refreshing flavor. For the stir fry sauce, I use a splash of sake and light soy sauce along with a bit of naturally aged soy sauce {for the color} to tenderize and season the squid. Then a tiny bit of salt, sugar and cumin. Cumin is the ultimate essential spice for this delicious stir fry, which makes the flavor pop.

Chinese Squid Stir Fry Ingredients

Last but not least is to have vegetables and herbs to compement the squid stir fry

Green peppers, preferrably long green peppers are super tasty and great for stir fry dishes. Onion, either white or red work well too. If you like spicy food, dried chili also makes the color more vibrant. Ginger, garlic and green onion are three fresh herbs that are commonly used together for Chinese cooking for the aroma and taste.

Lastly, if you have either chives or young garlic leaves they make excellent addition to the color, texture and taste.

vegetables and herbs to complement squid stir fry

Enjoy a yummy nutritious Traditional Chinese Squid Stir Fry.

Squid Stir Fry Recipe Chinese Style
squid stir fry Chinese Style

Squid Stir Fry Recipe {Traditional Chinese Squid Rolls or Flowers}

Yield: 4 servings
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes

Squid Stir Fry is a traditional Chinese squid roll or flower stir fry. Squid, scored with diamond cut in a lattice pattern, curled up into a bite-size roll during the cooking that looks like a flower. Absolutely yummy and satisfying. An excellent way of enjoying the squid.

Ingredients

  • 2 whole squid, fully cleaned
  • 2 tbsp avocado oil
  • 2 stalks of green onion, chopped
  • 1 small piece of ginger, organic preferred, thin sliced
  • 4 garlic cloves, thin sliced or minced
  • 1 small bunch of chives or young garlic leaves, chopped, optional
  • 1/4 tsp Himalayan pink salt
  • 5 oz celery or long green peppers, see notes
  • 4 oz red onion
  • 1/2 tsp cumin powder
  • 3 dried chili, optional, if you like spicy food

For Stir Fry Sauce:

  • 1 tbsp sake
  • 1 tsp naturally aged soy sauce, or dark soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 1/4 cane sugar, organic unrefined preferred

Instructions

Prepare the Ingredients:

  • If you are getting frozen whole squid, place them in a leakproof bag or container and leave them in the fridge for them to thaw thoroughly.
  • Clean the whole squid starting by pulling the head out and getting rid of the innards. Then peel the skin off. Read here for a detailed step-by-step tutorial.
    how to clean whole squid, remove head from squid body
  • Gather other ingredients. Add sake, naturally aged soy sauce, light soy sauce and cane sugar to a small bowl and whisk well.
    Chinese Squid Stir Fry Ingredients
  • Pat dry the squid and then cut the squid tube open and lay it flat on the cutting board with the interior side facing up. It is a bit easier to score the inside vs. surface of the squid.
  • Pat dry the squid and then use a sharp knife to lightly but firmly score it at an angle in parallel lines. Then do it again, this time across the line forming a diamond shape, thus all lines form a lattice pattern.
    score the score with diamond cut into a lattice pattern for squid stir fry dish
  • Cut the squid vertically along the center line, and then cut across into bite-size rectangles. These small rectangles will curl up inward along the short sides with the lattice pattern exposed.
    cut the lattice scored squid into bite-size rectangles
  • Blanch squid briefly - Add water to a 4-Qt stockpot and bring it to a boil and then add the squid pieces. Use a stainless steel strainer to fold all the squid pieces with water, about 30 seconds and then immediately remove them from the water. Do not over blanching the squid, otherwise, they will become tough and tasteless.
    briefly blanched squid for stir fry
  • Prepare vegetables and herbs - Wash and rinse them well. Slice & mince ginger and garlic, cut chives (or young garlic leaves), green onion, long green peppers and red onion into small bite-size pieces.
    vegetables and herbs to complement squid stir fry

Stir Fry Squid Rolls {Flowers}:

  • Turn the heat to medium-high and heat a 12-inch hard anodized fry pan for 2 minutes and then add 2 tbsp avocado oil. Use a silicone spatula to spread out the oil evenly, and add chopped green onion, ginger and garlic. Stir fry for about 15 seconds or till fragrant and add the blanched squid. Immediately toss and turn using a pair of bamboo or wooden spatulas for about 3 minutes. In between, sprinkle 1/2 cumin powder and then toss and turn to mix well, and then pour the stir fry sauce in a circular motion on top of the squid and immediately toss and turn to mix well.
  • Add the chopped vegetables including chives (or young green garlic leaves, optional), long green pepper (or celery), and red onion, sprinkle 1/4 tsp Himalayan pink salt, and immediately toss and turn to mix well. Continue to fold the vegetable with the squid using a slotted turner for about 2 minutes.
    Squid Stir Fry Chinese Squid rolls in the pan
  • All done! Enjoy a delicious and satisfying Squid Stir Fry.
    Chinese Squid Roll Stir Fry Recipe {You Yu Hua 鱿鱼花)

Notes

  • If you are not up for scoring the squid, you can make a Squid Rings Stir Fry, the same flavor, just a different look. Read here for a detailed recipe.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 548Total Fat: 33gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 17gCholesterol: 109mgSodium: 2452mgCarbohydrates: 31gFiber: 4gSugar: 7gProtein: 32g

Nutrition calculation is provided by Nutritionix to the best knowledge per ingredients description and isn't always accurate.

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Facebook

Leave a Comment

You may also like

Skip to Recipe