Squid with brandy & cream

Squid with brandy & cream

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(10 ratings)

Prep: 30 mins Cook: 1 hr, 15 mins

More effort

Serves 4
This dish is fabulously rich and delicious, and would go well with some buttered rice

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal537
  • fat28g
  • saturates12g
  • carbs13g
  • sugars6g
  • fibre1g
  • protein41g
  • salt1.29g
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  • 50g butter



    Butter is a dairy product made from separating whole milk or cream into fat and…

  • 1 large onion, finely diced



    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • 3 thyme sprigs, leaves stripped


    This popular herb grows in Europe, especially the Mediterranean, and is a member of the mint…

  • 2 bay leaves
  • 6 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 300ml tomato passata
  • 1kg cleaned large squid



    From the same family as the octopus and cuttlefish, squid may look jellyish and unappetising but…

  • sunflower oil, for frying
    Sunflower oil

    Sunflower oil

    Sunflower oil is made from pressing sunflower seeds and extracting the oil. It's usually…

  • 125ml brandy



    Brandy is a distilled spirit made from virtually any fermented fruit or starchy vegetable.…

  • 4 tbsp double cream
  • finely chopped flatleaf parsley, to serve


  1. Melt the butter in a casserole dish, then add the onion, thyme and bay leaves with a good grind of black pepper. Gently fry for about 15 mins until the onion is golden and soft. Only at this point stir in the garlic. Turn off the heat and stir in the passata. Leave to stand.

  2. Cut the squid in half lengthways down the cone. Chop each half widthways into 2.5cm/1in ribbons. Cut up the fins and the tentacles to a similar size. Dry off any wetness from the squid with kitchen paper. It must be as dry as possible so it will fry and colour better.

  3. Get a large frying pan and put on a high heat. When the pan is intensely hot, throw in a third of the squid with a small slug of sunflower oil and a generous pinch of salt. Fry hard, stirring occasionally, until well coloured. Tip the squid into the casserole. Repeat with the remaining squid, cooking it in batches twice more, adding more salt and oil with each.

  4. Return the casserole to the heat and add 100ml water. Stir well and bring to a simmer. Add 100ml of the brandy and put the lid on. Simmer very gently for 40 mins, then another 20 mins with the lid slightly off, allowing the juices to reduce a little. When tender, stir in the rest of the brandy and the cream, and serve scattered with parsley.

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Comments, questions and tips

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20th Apr, 2020
Easy to make, but we found it a little bland. Will definitely make again, but add some chilli flakes for a gentle heat.
David Rodríguez Díaz's picture
David Rodríguez Díaz
21st Mar, 2020
Absolutely delicious. I made this for my flatmates and we spent minutes just eating in silence of how delicious the dish was. I accompanied it with rice, as recommended, and it was outstanding. I'm definitely going to repeat this dish.
27th Jan, 2016
I came across this recipe whilst looking for something else and am so glad I did as it is absolutely delicious and is so easy to prepare. I used frozen squid tubes and tentacles from Tesco which despite being beyond their 'best before date' came out beautifully tender after cooking in the sauce. The sauce had a lovely delicate 'fishy' flavour whilst cooking with the lid on but disappeared towards the end of simmering with the lid partially removed. Next time ( and there will be many!) I will leave the lid on and reduce the cooking time by 10 minutes as the squid was very tender anyway. I served it with buttered basmati rice and steamed asparagus. It would also be gorgeous with raw king prawns cooked for a shorter time. Thanks, GF.
1st May, 2013
This is absolutely gorgeous I make it quite often, The children all love it and the squid is lovely and tender cooked this way. I don't add the extra brandy at the end purely because the children have it and actually there is enough brandy flavour in the sauce already. Tastes quite rich, For those that can't bear squid I reckon it would be lovely with chicken too.
Daff51's picture
27th Jan, 2013
Divine. Just cooked it using some bargain squid I'd frozen and it is truly lovely, a rich and deep sauce, which would work well with other seafood, eg, prawns, I think, and which would obviously require much less cooking time, once the prawns were added. I also increased the amount of brandy slightly. Highly recommended.
thecherub's picture
9th Aug, 2011
Excellent! Really delicious sauce! The texture of the squid was just right (I used 2 frozen squid tubes from Watirose) and then halved the rest of the ingredients (although I did add a dash more cream and brandy than suggested at the end) It turned out beautiful. Cant recommend it highly enough, simple to do and yummy with it.
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