How to Grill Octopus
id you just buy an octopus and don’t know how to prepare it? Don’t worry, here we will show you the best way to prepare an octopus, roasting it. Although it seems easy to make, octopus is actually one of the most difficult dishes to make, mainly because of its texture.
The octopus must be treated very carefully so that the meat is not too tough or soft, and achieving this is undoubtedly an arduous task. If you want to learn how to grill octopus correctly, then don’t stop reading, follow our tips so you can enjoy this exquisite dish.
Set your octopus correctly
The octopus may have been in the freezer for a while, so it needs to be freshened up before you start preparing. Although this is not done lightly, since it should not be defrosted in the same way that it is done with red meat or chicken.
Use a little tap water, this should be a nice cool temperature to help slow down the thawing. Under no circumstances should you use hot water or boil the octopus while it is still thawed, this could cause the meat to spoil in flavor and texture.
Returning to the tap water, we must gently massage the octopus while it is thawing, this will help it to do so evenly. Once it is completely thawed and is at room temperature, you can proceed to the next step.
Ways to prepare the octopus before grilling
If you want your octopus to be at its point, then you must follow some steps to obtain the best texture and flavor. Some dip the octopus in sauces to season them, this really doesn’t add any flavor, instead, you could try the following:
Season a little before boiling
If some ingredients are added to the water where the octopus will be boiled, it will absorb the flavor, adding spectacular seasoning. Prepare a large pot where we are going to boil the octopus, bring it to a simmer and let it heat just a little, then add the following ingredients:
- 3 slices of lemon
- ¼ Cup of wine vinegar
- 3 cloves of garlic (must have been previously crushed)
- 5 sprigs of thyme and 3 bay leaves
- Finally, add our octopus
Bathe the octopus entirely with all the ingredients, cover the pot and increase the temperature to start cooking the octopus a little. Leave it for about 10 minutes, or until the skin turns purple and the octopus begins to contract its tentacles.
Boil the octopus
Now about four cups of water should be added to the hole where the octopus is, after this you should wait for it to start boiling. Just when it does, we add a tablespoon of salt and lower the temperature so that it stays on low heat, the lid should not be added.
Remember to taste the broth to make sure it has a good taste, add a little more salt if you think it is necessary. The process could take at least two hours, use a tong to squeeze the thickest part of the octopus, this way you will know if it is tender.
Never use cutlery to pierce the octopus meat, this could cause all the juices of the dish to be lost. Once it’s ready, you just have to lower it from the heat and let the octopus cool down with the broth.
Prepare your grill
While you wait for the octopus to rest a bit, it’s time to start preparing your grill by adding a little olive oil to the grill. Add the embers and make sure they heat up perfectly everywhere, avoiding excessive heat so as not to burn the octopus.
You can also use a gas grill, although there is nothing better than a good barbecue made with charcoal. The smoke from the burning wood will add a distinctive smoky flavor, a touch you’ll definitely appreciate when the dish is ready.
Cut the octopus correctly
After the octopus is excellent, please remove it from the broth and use scissors to start cutting the tentacles. If you prefer to use a knife, it must be perfectly sharp, otherwise you will end up crushing the tentacles when you try to cut them.
Make sure you cut even sized pieces, they can be whole or bite sized, but not too ; remember they go on the grill. After this you should refrigerate the octopus a little until it cools, this will help with the texture and prevent the skin from coming off on the grill.
I suppose I wonder what to do with the broth, because it is best to reserve it for anything else. It has an incredible flavor so that it could be used for sauces or seafood salads.
It’s time to take it to the grill
Before grilling, add a little olive oil, salt and pepper to a cup, stir well and use a brush to brush your octopus. Now you are ready to grill it, add it to the grill and give it a few turns to heat it a bit, do it for a few minutes.
If you decide to cut the tentacles whole then you will need to leave them for a couple more minutes on the grill to get a good texture. Remember to turn them constantly to prevent them from ending up with burnt parts.
After this you can serve it whole or chop it into bite-sized pieces, in case you have already chopped it then it will be ready to eat. You could accompany it with some dressing and freshly squeezed lemon juice.