Grilled Squid with Miner’s Lettuce Salad & Mint, Parsley, Anchovy Pesto

Charred squid or calamari steaks made even smokier with pimenton is served with a bed of wild greens known as miners lettuce and a bright mint & parsley pesto with anchovies

Grilled Squid with Miner’s Lettuce Salad & Mint, Parsley, Anchovy Pesto 

Print This Recipe Total time Yield 4Source Adapted from Matthew Dillon for Food & WinePublished


  • 2 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest, separated
  • 2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 2 clove galic, peeled & minced
  • 1 teaspoon pimentón de la vera (smoked spanish paprika)
  • 1 cup extra-virgin olive oil separated
  • 2 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley, chopped and separated
  • 1 pound cleaned small squid bodies
  • 1 pinch salt & pepper as needed
  • 4 ounce anchovy fillets, chopped
  • 2 tablespoon drained capers
  • 2 medium shallot, minced and separated
  • ½ cup mint leaves, chopped
  • .75 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 bunch miner’s lettuce
  • 1 cup cooked or canned chickpeas
  • ¼ cup whole mint leaves
  • ¼ cup whole flat-leaf parsley


In a medium bowl, combine 1 teaspoon lemon zest and 2 tablespoons lemon juice with 1 clove minced garlic, pimentón, ¼ cup olive oil and ¼ cup of the chopped parsley. Add the squid and toss to coat. Season lightly with salt & pepper. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours.
In a food processor, combine the anchovies with the capers, 1 minced shallot, remaining minced garlic, 1 ½ cup chopped parsley, ½ cup chopped mint, chives and remaining lemon zest and 2 tablespoons lemon juice and pulse the machine 10 or 12 times, scraping down the sides once or twice until finely minced. Then with the machine running, slowly pour in ½ cup olive oil. Season the pesto with additional salt and pepper.

In a large bowl, pour the remaining 2 tablespoons lemon juice over the remaining minced shallot and let stand for 10 minutes. Whisk in the remaining ¼ cup olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Add the miner’s lettuce, chickpeas, whole mint leaves and whole parsley leaves and toss the salad.

Meanwhile, light a grill. Remove the squid from the marinade and season with salt. Grill the squid over high heat until it is lightly charred and just cooked, about 2 minutes per side. Mound the salad on 4 plates. Spoon the green sauce onto the plates, top with the grilled squid and serve.