Cleaning squid is just plan gross. Not gross in a gag reflex sort of way, but tedious, slimy, cold, not fun sort of way. And you get the lingering suspicious that no matter how clean they are, they just aren't clean enough.
It took me close to an hour to clean 2 lbs. of squid. There were good instructions on how to clean squid in The Classic Italian Cook Book by Marcella Hazan- which is where I found this recipe.
There are also these nice directions From the New York Times March 1982:
HOW TO CLEAN SQUID
1. Twist and pull off the head of the squid. As you do this you will also pull out much of the interior of the body.
This may include an ink sac, which is used in many European recipes but not for the recipes given here. Discard the pulled-out material.
2. Pull out and discard the semihard translucent, sword-shaped pen. 3. Using a knife, cut off the tentacles from the head of the squid (just in front of the eyes). 4. Using the fingers, pop out the round, hard beak in the center of the tentacles. Discard the beak. 5. The tentacles are wholly edible. If they are long, you may want to cut them in half or into smaller lengths. 6. Rub off the brown skin of the squid, holding the squid under cold running water. Use coarse salt while rubbing and pulling with the fingers.
7. Rinse the squid inside and out to remove any remaining material from inside the body. Drain the squid thoroughly and set aside.
Calamari e Piselli alla Livonese aka Stewed Squid with Tomatoes and Peas
1.5 tbs. finely chopped yellow onion
3 tbs. olive oil
1.5 tsp. chopped garlic
1 tbs. chopped parsley
3/4 c. chopped tomatoes with juice
2 lbs. of the smallest possible squid
salt and pepper to taste
2 lbs. fresh peas or 10 oz. package of frozen peas
In a saute pan add onions to olive oil and heat until pale gold. Add garlic until light brown. Add Parsley, stir once and then add the tomatoes. Simmer for 10 minutes
Slice squid sacs to rings, divide tentacle clusters in half then add squid. Cover and cook for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. If you are using fresh peas add now. If you are using frozen peas add at about minute 25.
Salt and pepper to taste.
I served it with whole wheat pasta and added extra tomatoes in the cooking process. It was pretty tasty, although I had a hard time getting past the squid cleaning process. I think that if I ever make it agian I will cook the onions and garlic in bacon fat or along with panchetta.
Also, after you clean the squid, get the discarded squid parts out of the kitchen ASAP, because they really stink.