WC Recipe Day 7: Portugal

*Note: Each day of the group stage of the World Cup 2018 I will be making a meal from one of the countries playing that day.  Day 7 results went as expected with wins by Spain and Uruguay.  Portugal won despite getting outplayed by Morocco and secured a crucial 3 points.

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Octopus a lagareiro

This is a take on a classic Portuguese dish which is usually made in the oven.  I grill it here.  It is served with potatoes.

This octopus was frozen but don’t be concerned about that many frozen octopi are excellent quality.  Many of the frozen ones are tenderized for you prior to freezing but if your not sure the process is basically beating the Octopus against the side of something smooth.  Above in the video I use my sink.

Rinse off the octopus then separate the head from the tentacles.  If the ink sack is still attached that also needs to be removed and discarded.

In a large pot add chopped onion, lemon, herbs (here I have bay leaves and parsley but you could use any), 1/2 bottle of white wine and wine corks.  The wine corks are traditionally used when simmering the octopus.  Some people think its purely done as a tradition, however the “science” behind doing this is that some think the tannins from the corks help soften the octopus.  The temperature of the water needs to be 190-200 degrees.  You want it to simmer but not boil.  Then add octopus.  Simmer for 1.5 hours.  In a separate baking sheet cut small potatoes and add olive oil and garlic.

Take the octopus out of the simmering liquid.   Cut the tentacles into individual pieces and light the grill.  Grill for 4-5 minutes of each side or until charred.  Then place on a plate and drizzle with olive oil, salt, and fresh lemon juice to taste. Serve with the potatoes which were put in the oven for about 45 minutes until done.

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