Cuttlefish braised in red wine

You can substitute calamari for the cuttlefish in this recipe – it's just as tasty, but doesn't need to be cooked for quite as long. What I particularly love about this dish is its amazing meaty character, something helped along by the red wine. It's also very adaptable and is equally delicious served with soft polenta, rice or pasta.


  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 red onion, peeled and sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and sliced
  • 3 salted anchovy fillets
  • 1 tsp mild chilli flakes sea salt
  • 400g cleaned cuttlefish, cut into 2cm-wide strips
  • 1 large vine-ripened tomato, roughly chopped
  • 250ml medium-bodied red wine
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 1 lemon, quartered
  • Extra virgin olive oil, to serve
  • ΒΌ cup flat-leaf parsley leaves, washed and dried


Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a heavy pan. Add the onion and garlic and gently soften over a low heat for about 10 minutes, taking care not to brown. Add the anchovies, chilli and a pinch of salt and continue stirring while the anchovies melt (1-2 minutes).

Add the cuttlefish, tomato and wine. Half cover the pan and cook very gently until the cuttlefish is tender, about 4 minutes.

Share the cuttlefish across 4 plates, add a grind of pepper, season with salt, squeeze the lemon over the top, drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with parsley and serve immediately.

NOTES: Want something to drink?
Try the Coriole Sangiovese 2015, McLaren Vale, SA.
Punchy red fruits, succulent cherries, a subtle touch of earthiness and a savoury finish are all characteristics of this medium-bodied wine from one of the pioneers of sangiovese in Australia. The grippy tannins are well suited to the flavours of tomatoes, onions and herbs in which the cuttlefish has been braised.

First published in the Good Weekend.

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