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Squid Thoran (Calamari Stir Fry)

 Published 2011-Sep-01   Updated 2020-Oct-19

- Submitted by Grace Sam

(Kanava Thoran, Squid Stir-fry, கணவாய் தோரன்)

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Squid or Calamari - This seafood dish is very common in most coastal regions of India. Squid Thoran is a special preparation made in Kanyakumari district. Squid rings are cooked with mild spices and topped with roasted powdered rice. The coarse rice adds a unique nutty flavor to the dish. This preparatiion is a traditional one made by our grandparents.  

Another variation is to top with roasted coconut. Either way, this dish makes an excellent combination with white rice and some curry or with kappa (boiled tapioca). In our family we even like to mix this thoran with some plain hot steaming rice and have. Do try it ot and give your comments.

Recipe For Squid Stir Fry

Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 30 minutes
Serves: 4


  • Squid / Kanava / Calamari - 1 lb (1/2 kg)
  • Garlic Cloves - 2
  • Turmeric powder - 1/2 tsp
  • Red Chilly Powder (or red pepper flakes) - 1/2 tsp
  • Coriander Powder - 1/4 tsp
  • Mustard Seeds - 1/2 tsp
  • Curry leaves - 2 springs
  • Oil - 2 tbsp (preferably coconut oil)
  • Salt - to taste

To Roast & Powder

  • Rice - 1/2 cup
  • Fenugreek Seeds - 1/4 tsp
  • Cumin Seeds - 1/4 tsp


  1. Clean the squid and cut it into rings.
  2. Heat oil in a kadai or pressure cooker and splutter some mustard seeds and curry leaves.
  3. Cook the squid with some water, salt, garlic cloves and turmeric powder till the squid gets tender. You can also pressure cook for 2-3 whistles.
  4. In the meantime dry roast the rice on low flame till it turns golden brown.
  5. When the rice is nicely roasted, add the fenugreek seeds and cumin seeds. Fry for just a minute and switch off.
  6. Coarsely powder the mixture and keep it aside.
  7. When the squid is tender and most of the moisture has evaporated, add the chilly powder and coriander powder.
  8. Finally add the coarsely powdered rice. Check for salt and other seasonings and adjust if needed.
  9. Cook for about 5 minutes and switch off.

Serving Suggestion

  • Squid thoran goes very well with rice and some curry, boiled tapioca or even with chapatti.

More Seafood Recipes

Crispy Fried Calamari Crispy Fried Calamari Fish Peera Fish Peera Crab Curry Crab Curry Shrimp (Prawns) Curry Shrimp (Prawns) Curry
See more ⟩⟩

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Comments (2)

Person   ()
squid meaning/squid where will find it or brought it
Person   ()
Squid is also called calamari and kanava in tamil. You will find it most fish markets.

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 Published by on and last updated on 2020-10-19.