Squid, cabbage, fennel and orange salad


There are many varieties of squid which would be suitable for this dish. Here I have used Gould’s squid also known as Arrow squid which is available year round but peaks during the Autumn months from February to May. It is relatively inexpensive and often wild caught. The smaller specimens of squid are preferable for quick cooking over a high heat as the larger squid tend to be tougher and more suited to longer slower cooking. Whilst I have given a brief explanation for cleaning squid below it is also available as ready cleaned hoods.
This dish can be eaten as a breadless sandwich much like San Choy Bau where you roll the filling up in the cabbage or if you prefer just as a salad.

Squid, cabbage, fennel and orange salad

Servings 2 people


  • 1 mandoline
  • 2 metal skewers
  • 1 BBQ



  • 200 gms squid, cleaned approximately 380gms uncleaned
  • 1/2 tbls dark soy sauce
  • 1/4 tsp fish sauce
  • 5 drops sesame oil

Cabbage salad

  • 2 pieces savoy cabbage
  • 40 gms fennel, finely sliced easier with a mandoline
  • 15 gms red eschalots, finely sliced
  • 1 whole orange peeled and segmented
  • 2 tbls dill sprigs
  • lemon juice
  • sea salt
  • ground black pepper
  • extra virgin olive oil



  • To clean whole squid: Hold the head and arms and pull firmly to separate head from tube, the main body.
  • Cut below the eyes and discard head and guts. Remove the beak (mouth) out from between the arms and remove quill. Peel the tube and fins of the outer film. Cut the tube open along the seam, lay out flat and wipe the inside clean with a clean cloth.
  • Cut the cleaned squid tube and fins into similar sized pieces approx. 3cm square.
  • Cut the tentacles into halves of four tentacles each leaving them at their full length.
  • Thread the squid onto skewers alternating between the main body pieces and the tentacles.
  • The tentacles can be threaded through each other but do not worry if they hang loose too much as they will curl and shrink as they cook.
  • Mix the soy sauce, fish sauce and sesame oil together and pour over the squid to marinate. This can be done in advance.
  • Pre heat your BBQ so that it has maximum heat. The squid needs to cook very quickly.
  • Place the skewers on the grill and cook for approximately 5 minutes until the flesh has turned white, turning once.


  • Place the Savoy cabbage leaves on the serving plate.
  • In a bowl mix together the fennel, eschalots, dill fronds, orange segments and 1 tbls of the orange juice with 2 tbls extra virgin olive oil. Divide this mix between the two cabbage leaves.
  • Place the squid skewers on top, remove the skewers and finish with a sprinkle of sea salt and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.
Course: Main Course, Salad
Season: Autumn
Category: salad, Seafood

Image credit: Me

Please let me know how it turned out ! Leave a comment below and tag @birdcowfish on Instagram and hashtag it #goodsimpledelicious.

Alex Herbert © Copyright 2021. All rights reserved.