Summer is here and that means my focus will immediately be shifting to – Grilling!! Being outdoors and grilling up my favorite foods is basically heaven in my book, but it shouldn’t stop at chicken.
There are so many unique proteins you can grill, one of them being octopus. It’s lean, tender and delicious. Now, I know octopus can sound scary but it really isn’t. You might picture suction cups or maybe the daunting beak. But, it is easy to grill and even prettier to serve.
I just recently started making octopus. I try to make it simply and without much fuss. To make it even easier, I usually ask Wholefoods to cut me a few tentacles to take home, so I don’t have to manage the whole octopus. The store in Framingham and Dedham both carry it consistently, and yes, it is frozen. It’s actually better that it is, because it starts the tenderizing process once you thaw it. Ask for the tentacles only, it keeps it easy.
1.) In a large pot, set your liquid to a simmering boil. Use just enough to cover the octopus. You can use water with aromatics such as thyme and peppercorns or some people use wine. Either works but if you’re using red wine, do yourself a favor and throw the cork into the pot. It helps tenderize the meat. Simmer the tentacles for about 20-30 minutes, until fork tender. Remove from liquid.
2.) Place octopus in a hand towel and rub to remove outer layer of skin to expose white meat. It doesn’t have to be perfect. You can do both of these steps ahead of time, even a day ahead of time. If you do, be sure to wrap the octopus in saran wrap and place in fridge overnight.
3.) Right before you are ready to grill, marinate the boiled octopus in lemon juice, olive oil, minced garlic for 15 minutes. Place on an extremely hot grill, caramelizing and cooking each side approximately 8 minutes. You want it crispy and blackened, but not burnt and dry. Remove from grill. Drizzle with lemon and olive oil upon finishing. Slice or serve whole with roasted potatoes, pesto and garnish with tomatoes.
Pour a glass of wine and enjoy! I will be posting grilling recipes from the garden and some of my favorite dishes all summer. Come back and check it out. 🙂