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Grilled Marinated Octopus Salad with Roasted Rainbow Vegetables and Arugula

October 3, 2016

 

First of all, I have never cooked octopus before, so who am I to deny myself a challenge? Second, I have made a very similar version of this salad in the past, but with beef tenderloin. And... It. Is. Always. A. Winner. So I took something I am pretty familiar with and added a little twist; beautiful oven roasted potatoes, and a new addition of rainbow carrots and a tiny sucker charmed protein. A “salad” with potatoes makes it something even my carb hungry husband can love. If I had his metabolism, I would eat like him too. Alas, I do not, so I just keep telling myself it is a salad and I can slack on cardio the next day. The Chimichurri style dressing has a very hearty herb flavor to it. I love it! In fact, it is going to double as your flavor on your oven roasted vegetables. If you want to double down, it would be a phenomenal marinade for chicken, pork, steak, other vegetables. I cannot go so far as to say I would wash my hair with it… but it isn’t entirely out of the realm of possibility? So saddle up cowboy, were about to go for a ride.

Makes 4-6 salads

 

Ingredients (all):

2 lbs cleaned whole octopus

1 bushel rainbow carrots

1 bag small mixed potatoes (about 15 1” diameter yukon, purple and red potatoes)

1 container baby arugula

12-14 cloves of garlic, divided

2 ¼ cups extra virgin olive oil, divided

1 cup apple cider vinegar

¼ cup lemon juice

½ cup cilantro

½ cup oregano

½ cup parsley

handful coarsely chopped carrots

shaved or grated parmesan (shaved is prettier, but it doesn’t really matter) a little less than ¼ cup/salad

salt

pepper

red pepper flakes

1 tsp dried oregano

 

Timeline/order:

Marinade the octopus for 1-2 days

Make the dressing

Oven roast the potatoes and carrots

Grill the octopus

Avengers assemble

 

For the Grilled Marinated Octopus:

 

2 lbs whole Octopus

¼ cup olive oil

A handful of chopped carrots, 1”-2” chunks

4 or 5 cloves of garlic, coarsely chopped

 

Add the olive oil, carrots, garlic and octopus to the pot, cover and cook for 10-15 minutes on a medium heat. You do not need to add any water as the octopus will generate its own.

While the octopus is getting its first round of cook on, go ahead and make the marinade for the octopus.

 

In a medium sized mixing bowl combine:

 1 cup olive oil

¼ cup lemon juice

5-6 cloves of crushed garlic

2 tsp salt

2 tsp black pepper

1 tsp red pepper flakes

1 tsp oregano

 

Wisk the ingredients together.

When the octopus has finished cooking (turns pink and begins to curl), it is time to prepare it for the marinade. Cut off the tentacles from the head/body. I write this assuming you have purchased your little ocean friend, and it has already been cleaned. If it has not, then I am not prepared to aid you in this watery quest. If you have a cleaned octopus, then the only thing you will need to discard is the mouth/beak.

Add your octopus to the bowl with the marinade, cover and refrigerate for 1-2 days. This is a meat that can hang out in a flavorful, acidic mixture for a few days. So don’t fret it if you forget it. Hehe.

WHEN it is time to grill the octopus, do so on a high heat! I used a grilled pan. I was 72 hot dogs grilling on my outdoor grill and I also liked the control I had on the stove top. But you can really use either to do get the right cook on that little fishy. Grill the octopus for 8-12 minutes per side.

 

That Dressing though (Chimichurri style dressing):

 

1 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 cup apple cider vinegar

4 cloves garlic

½ cup packed cilantro

½ cup packed parsley

½ cup oregano

1 tsp salt

1 tsp pepper

1 tsp red pepper flakes

Combine all ingredients in a food processor and blend until smooth. I like to retain the ground herb size a bit, kinda like a pesto… but thinner, since it is a dressing. Reserve ¼ cup of the dressing to toss your carrots and potatoes in. Take the rest and pop it in a mason jar or some other storage container.

 

For the Oven Roasted Vegetables:

 

Potatoes

Carrots

1/4 dressing reserve

 

Preheat your oven to 425 degrees.

Put a silicone baking mat on top of a cookie sheet.

Peel your carrots, I leave the skin on my potatoes.

I sliced both the carrots and the potatoes into small circles less than a quarter inch thick. You can slice them thicker, quarter the potatoes if you want. You will just have to add some cook time to it if you want a nice crisp, brown vegetable.

Toss the cut vegetables in with the ¼ cup of dressing that you reserved. Add them to the silicone mat and pop into the oven.

If you sliced them thin, you only need to roast for 15 minutes. If they are thicker, they could cook up to 30. Just kinda keep an eye on them.

After you take the oven roasted carrots and potatoes from the oven, add a little more salt to them.

 

Putting it all together:

 

Okay y’all, I feel like I wrote you a novel here. So thank you for bearing with me. The next part is easy and it WILL pay off. You’ve grilled your octopus, roasted your vegetables, made a dressing, shaved some parmesan. You are a culinary God/Goddess. So begin plating with arugula, add the vegetables the octopus. Drizzle your dressing and top with the shaved parmesan.  

The End.

Finito.

El Fin.

Okay, wait... just one more look at these vegetables!

 

 

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Food Network Star Farewell

August 2, 2018

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