Pulpo a la gallega

Hey guys, today we are cooking octopus. If you think octopus is disgusting and repulsive, I can understand you, because I didn’t eat it for 27 years. So stop reading this and switch to my sweet and cute cupcake recipe.
But if like me since 5 years, you already tried pulpo a la gallega, you know that it tastes so good that you even see beauty in those squishy tentacles. Look at them!

As an italo-spanish girl, born in Luxembourg, I must admit that I feel more attracted to italian dishes (and thai, I love love love thai food), but when it comes to preparing tapas with my spanish mother I feel always excited to learn new recipes. She taught me how to cook pulpo a la gallega as her mother did and now I will teach you.
I also have to say that even if octopus was very cheap in the Galician mountains when my mother was a child, it is quite expensive nowadays in Luxembourg; 19€ per kilo is not what I would call a bargain. But it’s worth it when you do tapas, no need to buy a huge mass if you do tortilla too (check out my recipe) and some fried chorizo.
So let’s do this, you won’t need many ingredients:

  • Octopus legs (of course you can buy the whole animal but then you will need to remove its innards and cut its head. I will wait 27 more years to do that shit! It’s easier to only buy the legs, my mother buys the whole thing but I think I wouldn’t)
  • Olive oil
  • Fleur de sel
  • Hot pimentón
  • Potatoes (6 to 8 big ones)

How to cook the pulpo:

  1. In a big pot, bring water to a boil.
  2. Rinse the octopus legs under running water. Make sure to trim the excess skin on the edges as seen on the picture. If you only bought the legs it will probably be already cut.
  3. Take the legs in one hand, dip them 3 times into the boiling water before you let them cook in it. It’s not a superstitious thing, it’s to curl the leg properly.
  4. Very important, only use wooden spoons to stir. Again this is not because of superstition even if I am spanish! My mom said that spoons made of steel make the squid chewy. Now don’t ask me if you can use silicon spoons because I have no idea. Sorry guys.
  5. After 10 minutes add 6 to 8 big potatoes, washed but not peeled. Boil for 35 to 40 additional minutes. The potatoes will need more time to cook with the octopus. Seems strange, but it’s a fact.
  6. Pour out the water and let the octopus and potatoes cool down until you can touch them without burning your fingers.
  7. Peel the potatoes and cut them into generous slices. Add 100 ml of olive oil, 1 tablespoon of salt, 1 tablespoon of pimentón and mix.
  8. Cut the octopus legs with scissors in thin slices and add 200 ml of olive oil, 1,5 tablespoons of salt and 1,5 tablespoons of pimentón and mix.

You can serve the potatoes topped with octopus or you can serve them in separate plates, it’s up to you.

I hope that you will try the recipe and if you want to stay updated, please suscribe to my Facebook page.