Gillyweed Salad | Harry Potter Recipes

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Gillyweed Salad | Harry Potter Recipes Super Hungry? Jump to the Recipe

It's officially "Harry Potter Week" here in the Starving Chef's kitchen. Every year, my kitchen transfigures into Hogwarts and I attempt to recreate and reimagine favorite foods mentioned inspired by the books and movies. Tonight we start at the end of the lake and prepare to submerge into the depths below.

If you haven't read or watched the Harry Potter series, be warned there may be mild spoilers in this post. It's been like, twenty years people! You've had plenty of time to catch up.

In the books, Harry is presented gillyweed by Dobby the house elf just prior to entering the lake challenge in the Triwizard Tournament. In the movies, Neville is the one who gives it to Harry, who then promptly begins to suffocate above water as the gillyweed gives him, well, gills.

However, if you aren't about to participate in an hour long challenge to rescue your best friends from drowning at the hands of merpeople annnnnd actually are just a Muggle, there are actual ways to enjoy gillyweed without sprouting gills.

Described as a greenish grey knot of slimy rat tails, in the Muggle version, fresh calamari, spiralized cucumbers and pickled seaweed are used instead - and doesn't taste half as bad as gillyweed, especially when dressed in a tangy sesame sauce.

In fact, the Muggle in me probably prefers this version over the magical one.

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Gillyweed Salad

  • Number of Servings: 4
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 2 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
Gillyweed Salad | Harry Potter Recipes


  • 1 English cucumber, spiralized thin
  • 1 cup prepared seaweed salad (usually found by the sushi stand in your grocery)
  • 16 oz calamari rings & tentacles
  • 3 tbsp black sesame seeds + more for topping
  • 1 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 3 tbsp mayonnaise
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • salt & pepper, to taste

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  1. Heat the sesame oil in a wok over medium heat. When shimmering, add the calamari rings and tentacles. Season with salt and pepper and cook for 1-2 minutes, until tender and cooked through. Remove from heat and let cool.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, rice vinegar and black sesame seeds. In a larger bowl, fold together the seaweed salad and spiralized cucumber. Pour the dressing and toss gently to coat the mix evenly.
  3. Sprinkle the calamari on top of the cucumber mixture. Garnish with black sesame seeds, as desired. Serve to a witch or wizard in need of a magical dish to transform them into a human-fish hybrid (or enjoy chilled, as a Muggle).

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