Monday, 14 May 2007

Octopus - Pulpo a la Gallega

Ask your fishmonger to clean and prepare the octopus (take the nasty bits out) as it's not exactly a pleasant job. Even if they do it for you, you should clean it again at home (if you have children, ask them to do it, especially if they're boys - they'll love it!)

You need a big pan three quarters full of boiling water.
Add one peeled onion, a few bay leaves, a few grinds of black pepper and 2 medium size peeled potatoes.
Scorch the octopus by holding it with tongs and dipping it in to the boiling water 3 or 4 times.
When you've done this immerse it in the water fully. Cover with a lid and leave to simmer for approx 45 mins to 1 hour. (It may need longer cooking time for a large octopus). You should be able to put a knife through easily, but without it being too soft.

When it's done take out and slice up as in picture, arrange on a plate and drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle with a little sweet smoked paprika (only a tiny amount if children eating it too as it's quite strong). If you can get over it being octopus (which lots of people I know can't) it's really delicious. Edit: I meant to say to slice the potato up too and arrange on the plate first.


Kelly-Jane said...

I've never seen octopus to buy. Have eaten it once (well don't think I actually swallowed it), but I can't do the tentacles thing!

Was it good?


Little Foodie said...

I just laughed and laughed when I read your comment. I'm still laughing now... Yes of course it was good - It's one of Little's favourite foods! Precocious child! :) Still laughing..

ros said...

Amanda, you beat me to pulpo a la gallega. I've had two octupus(es?), which have been in the freezer for a rather long time and I was planning on doing exactly this with them. I've been avoiding it though, as Goon's squeamish flatmate might freak out totally when she see's them. Darned squeamish people!

Marie said...

I'm a bit squeamish myself. Not sure I could eat anything with tentacles! But then again I won't eat a snail either! Your children are going to have wonderfully adventurous palates!

Richard said...

I love octopus - and this is my favourite way of doing it. Ros - having it in the freezer is no bad thing (so long as it's not there too long) as this is one way of tenderising it - more hygenic perhaps than all those Greek tavernas who bash it on a rock then leave it in the sun for a few days!
Kelly-jane - when I lived there, I used to buy my octopus at Brixton market - anywhere with a large cosmopolitan customer base should be good, as it seems it's only us feeble Brits who don't want to buy it (despite plenty being caught in our waters).

Little Foodie said...

Hi Ros, you've got to do it before Goon leaves his flat, I want to see how they react, based on the fish heads episode. I've left a comment on your blog. Thank you

Hi Marie, I was really lucky as from a very early age my dad used to fish. He recently reminded me that he used give me the fish heads as he gutted them. I would then take the eyes out and play with them in a bowl. Not sure my mum was overly pleased but it explains why I have no fear of touching any raw meat or fish now I think.

Freya and Paul said...

I have never seen octopus to buy either - you don't secretly live by the Med do you?
It looks and sounds so good though!!

Joanna said...

I haven't eaten octopus for decades ... partly because there's no way I could have got my children to eat anything like that when they were younger - although now they are teens and 20s they have quite adventurous tastes. I think you could usefully post on how you've given your children such a zest for unusual foods - I suspect it's something to do with your comment about the children loving cleaning the octopus.


Oh for the love of food! said...

Hi Amanda! Thank you for visiting my blog and for your very kind words. I think your quest to educate your boys in healthy eating is very admirable. I have never cooked Octopus before but order it occasionally when we go out for Tim Sum. 'Salt and Pepper Octopus' is a specialty in Tim Sum Restaurants.

Little Foodie said...

Hi Richard, I prefer octopus salad with some nice tangy dressing but the boys prefer a la gallega.
Freya, I wish we did! :)
Joanna, Thank you, I'm working on something at the moment to do with Little Foodies the business (actually I'm not working on it at all as I've become rather addicted to blogging, but I should be working on it...)
Oh for the love of food, Thank you

Chris said...

Yeah - I can't do octopus I can see...only fried calamari (rings) in a restaurant. But I am totally wigged out but the multi-leg beast. Being Italian, you would think I would be over it...nope!

Little Foodie said...

Hi Chris, I thought I'd responded to this comment a while back but obviously forgot. We love octopus but we do know a lot of people who feel the same as you.


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