Octopus is a food that is accepted in countless gastronomic cultures, above all in Chinese and Japanese cuisine, where it is also eaten raw. In other countries, particularly in Mediterranean nations such as Italy, Greece and Portugal, eating charcoal grilled octopus is also very common, and what about Spain and is habitually served in restaurants all over the country, above all in recent years.
Although you will find octopus in fishmongers at any time of the year, it is best in the months of reproduction, between September and April, which is when they come closer to the coast.
Nutritionally speaking, this cephalopod is low in calories and possesses good quality proteins. Moreover, it provides the organism with a large amount of minerals (iodine, phosphorous, calcium, zinc and magnesium, among others), as well as vitamins B, A and E.
The flavour of its meat makes it a fine complement for countless recipes, but it is also delicious on its own, grilled. Here is the recipe.
You can use an ember grill or a ceramic grill (the former will guarantee more flavour). In both cases, add a splash of virgin olive oil beforehand and light it. Don’t wait for it to heat up excessively or the meat will harden.
Then, add the octopus legs whole, don’t cut them up, and with the help of a pair of tongs, keep turning them over to ensure they are grilled on all sides. Remember they will not be ready until they have acquired the brownish colour characteristic of grilled meat.
In order not to lose any juice, don’t add salt until you take it off the fire; besides, it’s better to use coarse salt (just a pinch). Once you have put the food on plates, you can serve it together with a little virgin olive oil in a small bowl.
Octopus is sometime served with its ink, which is also edible and can be served in a bowl as a sauce. Indeed, cephalopod ink is highly regarded, not only in cuisine but in certain areas of health due to the fact it has anti-tumoral and anti-depressant properties and has the capacity to slow down certain carcinogenic processes. Moreover, applied directly to the skin it has anti-fungal, anti-microbial and healing properties.
To conclude, eating charcoal-grilled octopus is a delicious way of taking care of your health. This recipe will enable you to surprise your guests and to seem like a great chef.
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