In a Grilling Rut? This Quick Seafood Supper Is the Answer

“MY STEPFATHER is from Puerto Rico and I vividly remember the excitement of my first visit,” said Renee Touponce. “We’d consume pinchos or skewers directly from the grill. They were delicious bites.”

This recipe for grilled squid served with crispy potato tostones, Touponce’s 3rd Slow Food Fast contribution, honors those early tastes. A sweet barbecue sauce made with pineapple and chili gives the tender, fast-cooking squid a tropical flavor. Meanwhile, the soft, boiled potato babies are gently mashed and pan-fried, then spiced with freshly squeezed lime zest and spicy garlic. If eaten in conjunction, the simple dish conjures the festive flavors Touponce was a kid and proudly continues to enjoy in her kitchens today.

Barbecue-Glazed Grilled Squid With Crispy Smashed Potatoes

Apply a grilling glaze made of chile, pineapple garlic, and pineapple to give the tender squid a fresh tropical flavor.


  • Salt Kosher
  • 1 1/2 pounds of baby potatoes
  • Two tablespoons of olive oil and an additional tablespoon to fry
  • One white onion, chopped
  • 3/4 cup of diced pineapple
  • 1/2 cup cilantro, plus extra for garnish
  • 1/2 jalapeno, stemmed, chopped, and seeded
  • Eight large cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup of ketchup
  • Two tablespoons of water
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • Two teaspoons of brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon soy sauce
  • One guajillo chile, toasted (optional)
  • Two limes, juiced and zested
  • 2 lbs of squid clean and dried
  • Lemon wedges


  1. Prepare a medium-sized saucepan of water salted to a point of boiling. Add potatoes. Boil until tender, 18 -20 minutes, depending on size. Drain. When cool enough to handle, gently press each potato until the skin splits but the potato is still intact.
  2. Place a small saucepan at medium-high heat. Add two tablespoons of olive oil. Add onions and cook until tender, approximately 5 minutes. Add the pineapple, 1/2 cup jalapeno, cilantro, and less than half of the garlic. Cook until the garlic softens but doesn’t turn color for about 3 minutes. Add vinegar, ketchup, water, and brown sugar. Add soy sauce and chile if you are using. Let it simmer until the chile softens, approximately 10 minutes. Blend till smooth. Add salt to taste and put aside.
  3. In the meantime, prepare the large saute pan with 1 1/2 inches of oil over medium-high temperature. Once the pan is hot, add the potatoes, making sure not to crowd. Fry in batches when needed until the potatoes are golden on the other side, about 3 minutes. Flip the pan and cook for a couple of minutes, then drain off the oil and mix potatoes with garlic and the rest with a pinch of salt, lime juice, and zest.
  4. Grill to high heat or place a cast-iron skillet at a high temperature. Squids should be dry on both sides and attached to 8-12 skewers. Sprinkle with salt. Reduce the heat to medium. Grill, sprinkling with the reserved sauce for chile, 3 to 5 mins per side. For the final grilling, cook 1 minute on both sides over high temperatures. (The meat should appear soft but not gummy.) Serve squid with potatoes served on the side. Sprinkle with lemon wedges and fresh cilantro.


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