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Those who’ve seen the movie “Jiro Dreams of Sushi” will probably remember the scene where it was revealed that it took almost an hour of massaging by a sushi apprentice to tenderise octopus at Jiro’s restaurant. Whether you resort to massage or opt for slow cooking under gentle heat, preparing octopus is usually a time-consuming process – but thankfully, the Don Bocarte Octopus comes already cleaned, pre-cooked and ready for action!
All you need to do is to cut up the octopus and use it for whatever dish you prefer – like a warm salad, simple pasta or the dish I’m going to show you, grilled octopus and potatoes. Known as pulpo gallego in Spanish, this is one of those classic tapas dishes that you’ll find anywhere in Spain, but especially in the coastal area of Galicia in the northwest. It’s very simple to make, with slices of boiled potatoes topped with tender octopus and a generous sprinkle of paprika and drizzle of olive oil.
However, my version has a little twist to it, thanks to the addition of cured Chinese sausages – just to show that sometimes you can flex a little bit of creativity to combine unusual ingredients and make new dishes! Come winter time in Hong Kong, you’ll see plenty of places selling these sausages; one is made using cured pork meat (lap cheong), the other using duck or goose liver (yun cheong). Locals often steam them with a pot of rice so that the rice becomes infused with that distinctive intense sausage flavour, but I thought it worked well with potatoes too, adding an extra layer of taste and texture. Do feel free to leave the sausages out of the recipe if you prefer though… and in that case, you’ll be left with the classic version of pulpo gallego!
Don Bocarte cooked octopus (450g) 10 fingerling potatoes, peeled 2 Chinese sausages – can be any combination 2 tsp of Spanish paprika 3 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil, plus more to drizzle Salt and pepper to taste
For more of Gary’s food adventures, head to his blog Joie De Vivre.
A self-professed gourmand who loves both eating out and experimenting with new cooking techniques at home, Gary also writes his own blog Joie de Vivre to keep track of his many eating and travelling adventures (as well as occasional mumblings about random things!). When he's not too busy eating, drinking, cooking and sleeping, he enjoys travelling, collecting kitchen gadgets, watching football and playing golf. Follow him on Instagram for even more food inspiration!
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