To cook up the most unctuous octopus, think “low and slow”. Ignore all the nonsense about adding corks to the cooking liquid and please don’t beat your octopus. Be nice! Respect your protein. Your reward will be transcendent.
Written By: Ashley Schleeper
Styling Assistant: Hannah Schmitz
1 pound octopus (about 4 medium sized)
1 celery stalk, roughly chopped
1 large carrot, roughly chopped
1/2 red onion, roughly chopped
1/2 cup kalamata olives, pitted and halved
1/4 cup tarragon, leaves picked
1/2 cup parsley, leaves picked
1/2 cup cherry tomatoes
4 cups arugula
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 lemon, juiced
salt and pepper to taste
In a medium size saucepan, generously salt 3 cups of water and bring to a boil. Add the octopus and cook just until the tentacles curl and the octopus becomes purple, about 30 seconds.
In a large pot, combine water, celery, carrot, onion and a pinch of salt. With a sieve, transfer the octopus from the salted water into the pot with vegetable stock and poach over low heat (should not exceed 140 degrees). Cook for 2 to 3 hours. In the cooking liquid, let the octopus chill in the fridge.
When ready to serve, remove the octopus from the stock and cut off the tentacles. Combine the octopus, tarragon, olives, cherry tomatoes, arugula and parsley in a large bowl. Toss with olive oil and lemon juice. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to finish.