Grilled Octopus....or "Why would you do that???"

At our crawfish boil last weekend I felt extra pressure having a few born and bred Southerners join us. And while it did result in having more than one rig to cook with, I was a little disappointed that the boil was far less spicy than it should have been......which was a nod to the Northern newcomers in attendance.

What attracted the most attention was the grillled octupus. When Lynn saw it on the grill she was a little unsettled, and asked "Why would you evah do thaaat?". Cracked me up, she did. Everyone seemed intrigued and the people who were familier with grilled cephalopods were excited at the prospect.

Unfortunately, I fell prey to the cardinal sin of grilling squid and octopi, I got distracted and let them over cook. Dogs, dogs, dogs. Well, at least the marinade was tasty. Here's the recipe

  • 2-3 whole octopus, thawed (as they are usually sold frozen)

  • 1 lemon, sliced into 1/4" thick slices

  • 1T black peppercorns

  • 1 T kosher salt

  • 1/2 C olive oil

  • fresh oregano (dried will suffice if necessary

  • 2T red wine vinegar

  • 1/4 C rice wine vinegar, unseasoned

Trim the octupus so that about 1" of the head (bulb) is removed, then cut about 1" lower than that cut, being sure to keep all legs intact.

Place octopus in medium pot and cover with water by about an inch or two. Add lemon, 1 T black peppercorms, 1 T kosher salt. Bring to a boil, then lower heat and simmer for 20 minutes.

Rinse ooctopus under cold water, then scrap dark purple skin off body and legs as best you can. It will not come all off (and make a mess under your fingernails).

Whisk remaining ingredients then combine with cooled octopus in a ziplock bag. Press out air and let marinate overnight or 24 hours.

Reserve marinate. Over high heat, grill octopus 8-10 minutes, until slightly charred. Do not over cook. Cover with reserved marinade.

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