Saturday, April 30, 2011

Extra smart invertebrate salad

I've been getting bored of my usual protein sources lately and since the weather is warming up, I've been craving more salads. Salads are of course known for being very proteinaceous. I was futzing around the grocery store this week, I noticed some frozen octopus in the seafood section and also noticed that 2 1/2 lbs of octopus was only $5.99. Hmmm... it's probably cheap because most people would a) think it is gross b) not know what to do with it. I've had some pretty tasty Greek and Japanese style octopus dishes, so I thought I'd give it a whirl.

I hesitated a little since a former co-worker was always talking about how smart octopi are and how he would never eat one. I had some foresight and googled "octopus intelligence" after I made the salad. This video demonstrating octopus resourcefulness is pretty cool, but be forewarned that the music is really bizarre in a new-age sort of way.

For those of you who are brave and interested in trying this dish, I boiled the octopus for about an hour until the legs were tender enough to stick a fork easily through. There are a lot of octopus boiling references around that suggest you need to smack the heck out of the raw octopus and boil it with a cork for who knows what reason, but I just did plain water with some salt and then rinsed it in cold water and it was pretty darn tender.

While I was chopping some of the veggies I thought that a mandoline might come in handy, but as you can see by my carrots, the titan peeler julienne peeler worked it's magic, so I will continue to hold off on the mandoline purchase!

I used rice vinegar, sesame oil and black sesame seeds for the dressing. Yum!