This vegan Calamari is made of king trumpet mushroom coated in batter and deep-fried until crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside. It's perfect as an appetizer, snack, beer pairing, or party food. Serve it with lemon juice and marinara if you want to enjoy it American-style or with lemon, vinegar, and parsley for the Mediterranean version.
Crispy King Trumpet Mushroom Calamari [Vegan]
- Vegetable oil, for deep-frying
- 11 ounces of King Trumpet mushroom
- 1/2 cup flour of choice
- 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs or corn meal
- A dash of garlic salt
- A few pinches of chili pepper (optional)
- 1 cup non-dairy milk
- A few pinches of sea salt
- Lemon wedges, for serving (optional)
- Chopped fresh parsley, for garnish (optional)
- Spiced coconut vinegar, for dipping (optional)
- Pour enough oil into a deep frying pan or pot until you have about 2 inches of oil. Heat over high heat. Test a small amount of mushroom and see if it bubbles right away without boiling. If it does, it's ready. If the oil is starting to smoke before putting the mushroom, your oil has become too hot. Lower heat until smoke disappears.
- Using your hands or a vegetable peeler, strip the mushroom into thin layers.
- If you want to do the traditional round shape, thinly slice the mushroom into rounds and cut out the core.
- In batches, dunk the mushroom in milk then coat in flour mixture.
- Fry in oil for 3 minutes. Repeat steps for the rest of the batch. Make sure you don't overcrowd the pan or pot when frying.
- Place calamari on paper towels to drain excess oil.
- Sprinkle sea salt all over to release more of the flavors.
- Serve immediately. Serve with lemon wedges, parsley, and spiced vinegar (optional).
- To make the American calamari version, squeeze lemon juice over fried calamari and serve with marinara or tomato sauce on the side.