Dorothy Porker

Octopus, Chorizo and Salsa Verde

Loaded fries with octopus, chorizo and salsa verde in a Styrofoam bowl on a black concrete background

UPDATE: After posting this recipe I read this article on The Guardian and decided to stop eating octopus. Find out how you can make more sustainable food choices at The New York Times.

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I love love love love octopus. It is by far my favorite thing in the world, except for maybe soft shell crab and salmon roe.

Plates of octopus, fried potatoes and chorizo with salsa verde on a wicker backdrop

How to prep octopus for grilling

Any time you work with octopus you need to pre-cook it to tenderize your eight-legged friend. Thank fuck for Tony, who has great instructions on how to do this in the below video. I haven’t tried the cork, but the bread really helps minimize the stink in your house.

After I prep my octopus I cut it into pieces: 8 tentacles and 4 sections of the head.

How to keep octopus in the freezer

Because very few people I know like octopus, or I don’t like to share, I freeze mine in single serve portions, 2 tentacles and 1 piece of head, for later use. It will keep this way for 9 months.

Loaded fries with octopus, chorizo and salsa verde in a Styrofoam bowl on a black concrete background

Octopus, Chorizo and Salsa Verde

Dorothy Porker
My favorite dish in the world combines tender grilled octopus with spicy earthy chorizo and a punchy salty salsa verde. Have them with whatever fried potato variation tickles your fancy.
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 15 mins
Cooling time 2 hrs
Course Dinner, Main course
Cuisine Spanish
Servings 4

Equipment

  • Large pot with a lid
  • Hunk of bread
  • Small food processor
  • Oven
  • Frying pan
  • Ovenproof plate

Ingredients
  

For the octopus

  • ample water to cook the octopus in
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3 black peppercorns
  • 1 medium octopus cleaned by your fish monger

For the potatoes

  • 1/2 chorizo sausage thinly sliced
  • 800 gr potatoes peeled, sliced and boiled for 5 minutes

For the salsa

  • 1/4 c / 30 gr parsley
  • 1/4 c / 30 gr mint
  • 1/4 c / 30 gr basil
  • 2/3 c / 160 ml olive oil
  • 1/4 c / 30 gr capers drained
  • 3 anchovy filets
  • 1 tbsp / 15 ml red wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp / 15 gr French mustard
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • pinch salt
  • pinch pepper

Instructions
 

Prep the octopus at least 3 hours ahead of time

  • You can also buy and use pre-cooked octopus tentacles for this dish.
  • Bring a large pot of water to the boil with a bay leaf and 3 black peppercorns.
  • Once the water has come to the boil, take your raw octopus and dip it in slowly three times, submerging it completely into and lifting it completely out of the water at 10 second intervals. This will temper the octopus and avoid it becoming to chewy from hitting the hot water all at once.
  • Let the octopus slide into the boiling water completely. Turn down the heat to a bare simmer and leave the octopus to cook for 1 hour with a hunk of bread wedged in between the lid and the edge of the pot, this prevents your house from smelling of octopus.
  • Turn off the heat once the hour is up and leave the octopus to cool in the cooking liquid.
  • Cut the octopus into 8 tentacles and 4 pieces of head once it's cooled down.

To make the salsa verde

  • To make the salsa verde, place 1/4 c/ 30 gr of parsley, mint and basil, 2/3 c/ 160 ml olive oil, 1/4 c/ 30 gr capers, 6 anchovy fillets, 1 tbsp/ 15 ml red wine vinegar, 1 tbsp/ 15 gr mustard, 2 cloves of garlic and a pinch of salt and pepper in a small food processor and mix until you get a nice gloopy sauce. Season further if necessary, personally I really like to lay on the black pepper here but don't think it needs a lot of salt because there is enough salt in the anchovy filets.

For the potatoes and to finish the octopus

  • Alternatively you can have this with fries, but cooking potato slices in chorizo fat really ads a nice dimension to the dish.
  • Preheat your oven to 150° C/ 300° F.
  • Fry the slices of 1/2 a chorizo sausage in a dry skillet until crisp and having let go of most of their oil content. Lower the heat, remove the chorizo and set it aside on a plate. This should take 4-6 minutes.
  • Place the plate with the chorizo in the oven to keep the chorizo warm.
  • Now add the pre-cooked slices of potato and fry them in the chorizo fat until golden and crisp. If the chorizo hasn't let go a lot of oil you can add some extra olive oil. This should take 10 minutes or so.
  • Once the potato slices have gone golden, set them aside on the plate and place it in the oven as well.
  • Finally fry the cooked octopus tentacles in the remaining oil until the edges start to crisp. This should take 10 minutes or so.

To plate up

  • Start with some slices of potato and chorizo on a plate, drape over two octopus tentacles and a piece of the head for each dinner and finish with nice drizzles of the salsa verde. Be sure to get a little bit of each component on your fork with each bite to complete the experience.

Notes

UPDATE: After posting this recipe I read this article on The Guardian and decided to stop eating octopus. Find out how you can make more sustainable food choices at The New York Times.
Because very few people I know like octopus, or I don't like to share, I freeze mine in single serve portions, 2 tentacles and 1 piece of head, for later use. It will keep this way for 9 months.
Any left-over salsa verde can be kept in a glass jar, be sure to cover it in ample olive oil and it should keep for up to a 5 days. It gives the perfect lift to virtually any animal proteïne. 
Keyword chorizo, loaded fries, octopus, potatoes, salsa verde, sea food, spanish food, spanish recipe

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