Saturday, September 19, 2009

Octopussy (I ain't no)

On Friday, I cooked an octopus. Well to be precise I cooked half an octopus, for the following reasons:
1. Octopus (es? ii?) are big.
2. Octopus are not that cheap.
3. I really, really didn't want to have to deal with leftovers.
4. The less legs to strangle me with when I'm not looking, the better.

Lovely fishmonger at the market with my half an octopus.

So I got home from the market with a big bag of slimy legs. Not very appetising.

Big bag o'octopus.

Then I 'cleaned' the octopus, which means to remove the parts that are less appetising than the rest of the slimy tentacly edible bits.

Ink sac and.. umm... other bits.

Then I washed what was left and blanched it (rapidly boiled for a few minutes) which was a bit spooky, it looked like a big pissed off octopus head would come out any minute and get me.

Then (no pictures, this bit wasn't very interesting) I braised Mr. Octopus in the oven for about 4 hours as per the instructions I found on the internet. Afterwards all the fat and skin and suckers came off and I was left with the muscle.

All the nasty bits that came off after cooking- one tentacle worth.

I was left with a fairly disappointing amount of edible octopus which (luckily) looked nothing like what I started with. I sliced the tentacles in half-cm slices widthways and we had one tentacle in spanish style tapas with paprika and olive oil, and the other three in a salad with papaya and tomato and coriander. I had a couple of glasses of wine and forgot to take photos of the finished product, sorry. But if I had remembered, it looked a bit like this:

Photo of octopus tapas from www.

Next time I think we'll be eating something else.

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