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Old 04-22-2012, 11:40 PM   #1
SBH20Man
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Eureka! I found it - the perfect octopus recipe!

I love octopus, and like many I've been experimenting with all kinds of various methods to get just the right flavor and texture. I think I've finally hit on the ideal method.

It is more work than my previously posted method (5 minutes in a pressure cooker) but it has two distinct advantages over the pressure cooker method: (1) The skin and suckers stay intact (with a pressure cooker, the skin and suckers "slough off" from the tentacles, leaving weird looking white ropes and (2) There is a lot more flavor with this recipe. Both methods produce very tender meat.

Here's the deal:

Pre-heat oven to 200 degrees

Clean the fresh 'pus (no need to freeze)

Simmer (not boil) in plain water for a few minutes (2 minutes for small pus, 5 for a bigger one). Throw away the water. You can salt it if you want (I do)

Freshly boiled octopus (cleaned first), ready to be braised:




Next, Cut pus into manageable pieces (for an average sized model, for me this means just separating the legs)

Get a small oven-proof casserole or dutch oven with a tight-fitting lid and line the bottom with a variety of herbs and flavorings. I wanted a Spanish/Italian flavor, so I picked some fennel fronds from the yard, added some sliced onion, bell pepper, and bay leaves. If you wanted an Asian flare, you could use ginger, green onions, lemon grass, etc.

Lay the pus on this bed of herbs/veggies, cover, and put into the oven. DO NOT ADD LIQUID. With the tight lid and low temperature, the pus will slowly release its liquid and cook gently in this moisture, retaining a LOT of flavor, becoming tender, and picking up the flavor of the other ingredients.



For a small 'pus, give it about 2-3 hours. For a bigger (1.5 lbs) one, 3-4 hours, and for a really big pus (2+ lbs) give it about 4-5 hours.

Remove from the oven and let cool. You can check for tenderness and if rubbery, put it back for another 30 minutes.

Now you can do whatever you want with it - slice it for salads, marinate it, or try one of my two favorites:

1. Brush with extra virgin olive oil and fresh garlic and grill over charcoal until crispy, drizzle with more XV Olive Oil and a squeeze of lemon. Great with a shot of Ouzo!

or

2. Simmer with tomato sauce, red wine, onion, garlic, capers, and red chile flakes for about 15 minutes to blend flavors. Serve with fresh rustic bread and a light red wine. Add a green salad and you have dinner!

Enjoy!
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Old 04-22-2012, 11:42 PM   #2
Bill McIntyre
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Re: Eureka! I found it - the perfect octopus recipe!

Damn that sounds good!
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Old 04-22-2012, 11:47 PM   #3
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Re: Eureka! I found it - the perfect octopus recipe!

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Originally Posted by Bill McIntyre View Post
Damn that sounds good!
Since we didn't get as "lucky" as you guys over the weekend, I needed a consolation prize to go with the crab cakes and ling cod baked in salt.

My WSB recipes will have to wait for another weekend, alas.... I'm still trying to perfect the ideal soy-miso glaze, anyway.
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Old 04-22-2012, 11:49 PM   #4
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Re: Eureka! I found it - the perfect octopus recipe!

[quote=SBH20Man;1641717

My WSB recipes will have to wait for another weekend, alas.... I'm still trying to perfect the ideal soy-miso glaze.[/QUOTE]

Well keep me informed (just in case I ever get a white sea bass).
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Old 04-23-2012, 10:44 AM   #5
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Re: Eureka! I found it - the perfect octopus recipe!

Definitely trying this with my next Puss! Thanks Brent! Have you ever tried a crock pot for these guys? I keep considering it, but have yet to give it a try.
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Old 04-23-2012, 11:32 AM   #6
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Re: Eureka! I found it - the perfect octopus recipe!

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Definitely trying this with my next Puss! Thanks Brent! Have you ever tried a crock pot for these guys? I keep considering it, but have yet to give it a try.
I'll bet a crock pot would work very similarly to the oven braising - I would just make sure not to add any liquid. My theory is that adding liquid dilutes the flavor, so a cooking method that doesn't require additional liquid is probably better.
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Old 04-23-2012, 11:59 AM   #7
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Re: Eureka! I found it - the perfect octopus recipe!

Thanks, I have one in the freezer I need to try (the wife was not happy about it) and I passed on a nice one yesterday.
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Old 04-23-2012, 12:07 PM   #8
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Re: Eureka! I found it - the perfect octopus recipe!

Here is a variation I posted back in 2005. Its different, but supports the point that octopus don't need liquid- they can simmer in their own juices.

http://www.spearboard.com/showthread...hlight=octopus
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Old 04-25-2012, 01:53 AM   #9
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Re: Eureka! I found it - the perfect octopus recipe!

Quote:
Originally Posted by SBH20Man View Post
Since we didn't get as "lucky" as you guys over the weekend, I needed a consolation prize to go with the crab cakes and ling cod baked in salt.

My WSB recipes will have to wait for another weekend, alas.... I'm still trying to perfect the ideal soy-miso glaze, anyway.
Here is a killer recipe I have used for Miso Black Cod...it is from Nobu's cookbook. Simple and absolutely delicious. I'm sure WSB would do just fine in the marinade.

Ingredients:
4 black cod fillets (about 1/2 lb each)

For the marinade:
1/4 cup sake
1/4 cup mirin
4 tablespoons white miso paste
3 tablespoons sugar


Preparing the marinade:
Bring the sake and the mirin to a boil in a medium saucepan over high heat. Boil for 20 seconds to evaporate the alcohol. Turn the heat down to low and add the miso paste, mixing with a wooden spoon. When the miso has dissolved completely, turn the heat up to high again and add the sugar, stirring constantly with the wooden spoon to ensure that the bottom of the pan doesnt burn. Remove from heat once the sugar is fully dissolved. Cool to room temperature.
**Make the Nobu-style Saikyo Miso marinade ahead of time and marinate the fish at least overnight or up to 3 days.

Pat the black cod fillets thoroughly dry with paper towels. Slather the fish with the miso marinade and place in a non-reactive dish or bowl and cover tightly with plastic wrap. Leave to steep in refrigerator for 2 to 3 days.

To cook the fish:
Preheat oven to 400F (200C, gas 6). Preheat a grill or broiler. Lightly wipe off any excess miso clinging to the fillets but don't rinse it off. Place the fish on the grill, or in a broiler pan, and grill or broil until the surface of the fish turns brown. Then bake for 10 to 15 minutes.
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Old 01-03-2013, 01:58 PM   #10
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Re: Eureka! I found it - the perfect octopus recipe!

Finally tried this recipe. Haven't pulled an octopus since Hawaii this summer (stuck with boiling in beer as I didn't have an oven or good pan there) The octopus came out amazing. I used "asain" ingredinients; bok choy, ginger, cilantro, lemon grass, and sea salt for the braising. By far the most tender octopus I've made, I will be using this method from now on. After braising I chopped up half the 'pus with a cucumber, more bok choy and cilantro, and tossed it all in a sesame ginger dressing. I took this chilled "octopus salad" to a NYE party with Family. Most of the people there had never had octopus and everyone loved it.
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Old 01-03-2013, 02:08 PM   #11
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Re: Eureka! I found it - the perfect octopus recipe!

Wow, that looks really good!

I haven't pulled a 'pus in a while, so haven't been able to experiment with recipe variations lately. However, I got a sous vide cooking setup for Christmas, so that will be my next experiment. (For those not familiar, "sous vide" literally translates to "under vacuum" but the idea is that you vacuum-seal the meat and then cook it in a water bath at very low and very exact temperature for a longer time).

My guess would be around 135 degrees for a couple of hours, but I'll report back after I do some tinkering.
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Old 01-16-2013, 05:41 PM   #12
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Re: Eureka! I found it - the perfect octopus recipe!

Awesone, got 25lbs of octopuse in the fridge and no new recipies left!
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Old 01-16-2013, 05:47 PM   #13
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Re: Eureka! I found it - the perfect octopus recipe!

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Awesone, got 25lbs of octopuse in the fridge and no new recipies left!
Try the recipe but with a crockpot on "low" and see how it turns out - report back.

It is amazing how little good solid information there is on the Interwebs for cooking octopus. most of the recipes I have found and tried are awful.
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Old 01-16-2013, 07:14 PM   #14
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Re: Eureka! I found it - the perfect octopus recipe!

Man! If only I had seen this post yesterday. I let a NICE one go. thanks for the post, the next one is history!!!
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Old 01-17-2013, 03:22 PM   #15
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Re: Eureka! I found it - the perfect octopus recipe!

[quote=SBH20Man;1774293]Try the recipe but with a crockpot on "low" and see how it turns out - report back.

It is amazing how little good solid information there is on the Interwebs for cooking octopus. most of the recipes I have found and tried are awful.

cooking some up tonight, ill let ya know
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