Octopus is a very nutritious, popular food in places like Western Europe and Eastern Asia. Unlike squid, a much more popular type of seafood and a relative of the octopus, the octopus is a food that is constantly hailed as one of the best types of seafood there are.

Though there are many ways to cook octopus -although canned octopus is not bad at all- in this article we’re going to focus on the Spanish method of cooking and serving octopus. The way they cook the octopus makes for a much more tender, soft yet chewy meat that far surpasses other ways of cooking octopus which tend to harden the meat unnecessarily.

Alternatively, we’re gonna see a much different approach with a japanese-inspired grilled octopus recipe that will satisfy those who crave a more smoky flavor.

Let’s get right to it:

Mediterranean Octopus

Also called pulpo á feira, this recipe is incredibly popular in open-air events, where people are served plates of chopped octopus with a big potato at the very center. Of course, we’re gonna use a sweet potato instead (or skip the whole thing entirely, if you prefer).

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium octopus
  • Coarse sea salt
  • Smoked paprika
  • Olive oil
  • 1 big sweet potato

How to make:


  1. You need a big pot in which the octopus can easily fit. Fill it halfway with water and bring it to a boil.
  2. Grab the octopus by its head and dip it in the boiling water. You’ll see the tentacles start curling upwards; Repeat this step between three and five times until the tentacles have curled all the way up.
  3. Chop the tentacles in small pieces (about 3-4 cm thick) and serve on a plate. Take care not to put pieces on top of each other.
  4. With the same boiling water, boil a sweet potato and place at the center of the plate.
  5. Sprinkle generously with smoked paprika and sea salt. Use olive oil do drizzle, you can use as much as you want: Spanish recipes always called for a heavy hand when it comes to olive oil!

Serve and enjoy with some bread, or even with some cauliflower rice - although typically this is a main dish and is accompanied only by a piece of bread.

Teppanyaki style octopus

Ingredients:

  • 1 Small octopus
  • 200 grams shrimp
  • ½ chopped onion
  • Soy sauce
  • Bell pepper, chopped
  • Olive oil

How to make:

  1. Drizzle a skillet with olive oil.
  2. With heat on high, add onion and bell pepper. Cook until onion is translucent and bell pepper starts darkening.
  3. Add octopus tentacles whole or cut in half. Add shrimp, cook on high for five to ten minutes.
  4. Add 2 cups soy sauce and lower the heat. Let simmer for 20 minutes.
  5. Stir and make sure most of the soy sauce evaporated.


Enjoy!