Braised cuttlefish with tomatoes and butter beans

This gorgeous braised cuttlefish dish from Chris Shaw is maximum flavour for minimal effort. Cuttlefish (or squid if you can't get your hands on a cuttlefish) is slowly cooked in a roasted cherry tomato and white wine broth until tender and finished with butter beans for a bit of texture. 

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First published in 2021
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'This is a lovely braise of cuttlefish which works all year round. In the summer I would use fresh tomatoes and in the winter tinned tomatoes work well. If you are struggling to find cuttlefish you can also use squid. I would serve this dish with a nice crusty loaf, great for mopping up any leftover sauce.'

Ingredients

Metric

Imperial

Method

1

Begin by preparing the cuttlefish. Slice it up into bite-sized pieces; the shape isn’t important. Give them a really good clean under cold water then drain in a colander

  • 1 whole cuttlefish, cleaned (your fishmonger will do this for you)
2

Preheat an oven to 200ºC/gas mark 6

3

Place the cherry tomatoes into a large baking dish with a drizzle of olive oil and a pinch of salt, then cook in the oven until slightly browned and caramelised. This should take about 20-25 minutes

4

Meanwhile, place a large pan over a medium heat and add the olive oil. Once the oil is warm, add the onion and fennel with a few pinches of salt. Gently cook until slightly softened without any colour then add the garlic and cook for a further minute

5

Add the anchovies, chilli flakes, fennel seeds and stir

6

Add the tomato paste and cook for 10 minutes over a low heat – this will give some body to the dish. Add the white wine and cook for a further 10 minutes

7

At this point the cherry tomatoes should be cooked. Add them to the pan along with all the roasting juices, breaking them up slightly as you do so. Cook for 5 minutes until they break down into a sauce, then add the cuttlefish along with a litre of water and simmer gently for 1 hour

  • 1l water
8

The cuttlefish should be really tender by this point; if it feels a little bit chewy, cook for another 10–20 minutes or so until nice and soft

9

Drain the tinned butter beans and add them to the braise. The beans are already cooked, so you just need to warm them through. Season with salt, pepper and a little lemon juice and zest

10

Ladle into bowls and finish with a drizzle of good olive oil

  • extra virgin olive oil
First published in 2021
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Cutting his teeth at London restaurants including Bao and Petersham Nurseries, over time Chris Shaw has developed a simple, seasonal approach to cooking which is now the focus of his menu at the Whitechapel Gallery’s Townsend.

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