Crispy marinated child octopus | RecipeTin Eats

Right here’s a simple, outrageously scrumptious option to prepare dinner child octopus: simmered till tender, marinated in daring Mediterranean flavours, then seared till crispy. Add a Greek Salad, bread for mopping and a glass of chilled wine for the right summer season meal!

Close up of Crispy marinated baby octopus

Crispy marinated child octopus

Introducing……the RecipeTin Household child octopus recipe! Tightly held for years, I’ve lastly been granted permission to share. I’m fully mad for it – and I’m hoping to make you fall in love with it too.

I do know octopus is a thriller to many, uncertain methods to strategy cooking it. So my purpose at this time is to indicate you the way simple it really is and persuade you the way unbelievably scrumptious it’s! Suppose – tender flesh with crispy legs, infused with a stack of Mediterranean lemon-garlic flavour. You don’t want any particular tools, and there’s no fiddly preparation required.

A be aware on the octopus debate – As with a lot of different meals, similar to veal, and even Australia’s favorite fish – salmon – there are moral debates relating to the consumption of octopus. For octopus, the dialog centres round its intelligence and sustainable farming. I select to play my half by sourcing octopus from sustainable Australian sources. Ask your fish monger. They need to know!

Crispy marinated baby octopus with a potato side salad
Platter of crispy child octopus with a aspect of crushed lemon-potatoes drizzled with residual octopus marinade (it’s so good!)
Grilling Crispy marinated baby octopus
Then BBQ’d till crispy! (Or pan-fry)

How one can prepare dinner child octopus so it’s tender – with crispy legs!

There appears to be a whole lot of info “on the market” for suggestions and tips to tenderise octopus. I don’t get why – it’s easy. Simply simmer on a low warmth till it’s tender. It normally takes 1 hour, no matter octopus measurement (child octopus or legs of enormous ones), and you may simply pull one out at any time to verify.

As soon as it’s tender, you would eat it as is, simply drizzled with a dressing or a sauce (strive chimichurri, romesco or Sauce Vierge). However I wish to marinade it in a daring Mediterranean lemon-garlic marinade to infuse with flavour then sear till crispy!

How to make Crispy marinated baby octopus
  1. Braise till tender – Simmer the octopus with aromatics over low warmth for 1 hour or till it’s tender, checking first at 45 minutes. The braising liquid really has a correct title, court-bouillon, which is a rapidly cooked broth generally used for poaching seafoods.

    To verify if the octopus is tender, take it out of the pot, minimize one leg and have a nibble to verify. We wish it tender, not robust and chewy. However not overly gentle and mushy.

    For the newborn octopus measurement I get, it’s normally bang on 1 hour. If they’re somewhat bigger, it may take 70 minutes or so. If smaller, they could be finished across the 50 minute mark. Anticipate massive octopus legs to take across the identical time, regardless of being thicker. It’s sort of like cooking chuck beef – there’s a minimal time it takes for the meat fibres to breakdown no matter the scale of the meat you might be cooking (small beef stew cubes vs an entire pot roast).

  2. Drain – As soon as the octopus is tender, drain in a colander then select all of the bits – bay leaves, onion and many others, as greatest you may. No should be meticulous right here, it’s superb if there’s little bits caught within the octopus.

How to make Crispy marinated baby octopus
  1. Marinade 24 hours – Combine the marinade components in a bowl, then pour over the octopus in a bowl or container and toss properly. Make sure you do that whereas the octopus remains to be sizzling as a result of it’s porous and can take in the marinade higher.

    Cool fully then cowl and refrigerate to marinade for 12 to 24 hours. Don’t shortcut the marinating time! It’s actually price it, for flavour infusion into the octopus. I examined it with a 6 hour marinade and it had noticeably much less flavour.

  2. Sear till crispy! Cook dinner the octopus on the BBQ or in a big skillet on the range till the legs are golden and crispy. Over medium excessive warmth, it solely takes round 4 to five minutes. Rotate frequently to get color throughout, however give the octopus most sear-time sitting upright which is able to get the legs good and crispy. All people’s favorite half!!

To serve, pile the octopus on a platter, drizzle with lemon juice, sprinkle with parsley and chilli and add some recent lemon wedges so individuals can add extra lemon to style.

Crispy marinated baby octopus with potato side dish
Sides pictured with the bay octopus – Greek Salad and crushed potato salad (instructions in recipe notes!)

The “exhausting and quick” technique – Octopus can be cooked by searing in a short time over excessive warmth, like steak. The flesh will likely be tender though chewier than the slow-simmer technique I’m sharing at this time. Though I’ve had nice quick-seared octopus in my time, I discover that the standard of octopus actually comes into play. At the moment’s braising technique is safer – and to be trustworthy, I want it as a result of you will get extra flavour within the dish!

What you want to make crispy marinated octopus

The newborn octopus

Nicely, firstly, we want child octopus. 🙂 It’s offered recent or frozen at seafood outlets. If frozen, let it thaw and drain off the surplus water earlier than utilizing.

The octopus ought to be offered already cleaned which suggests the beak (bone like piece on the pinnacle) has been eliminated. The pores and skin ought to nonetheless be on and we won’t be eradicating it as a result of it softens when cooked.

TIP: You may pace up thawing by placing the frozen octopus in a sink stuffed with water.

Braising and marinating

And right here’s what you want to braise and marinate the octopus – nothing uncommon right here!

Ingredients in Crispy marinated baby octopus

The braising liquid is sort of a lemony vegetable inventory, infused with flavour from lemon, bay leaves, parsley, garlic and black peppercorns. It’s pretty impartial, and this step is extra about getting some refined flavour into the octopus flesh.

The marinade – Octopus is definitely very delicate and delicate so it’s a terrific sponge for flavour. On this recipe, I’m utilizing a daring Mediterranean marinade made with lemon, garlic, olive oil and an excellent hit of purple chilli flakes for little pops of warmth. These flavours are a pure match with octopus which is a favorite all throughout the Mediterranean!

The garnish – I exploit a sprinkle of parsley (simply decide some leaves off the stems earlier than including into the braising liquid), lemon and slices of enormous purple chilli, extra for a splash of brilliant color reasonably than further spiciness (as a result of the big chillies aren’t spicy).

Crushed potatoes on the side of Crispy marinated baby octopus
The crushed potatoes drizzled with leftover marinade


A dish this fabulous wants little greater than a easy backyard salad and a few crusty bread to mop up all these juices you see on the plate. Add a glass of chilly wine and you’ve got your self a spectacular meal for a sizzling summer season day.

Having mentioned that, right here’s what you see pictured in images on this put up.

  1. Greek Salad – very becoming for this Mediterranean octopus dish! The massive chunks of recent juicy cucumber and tomato pair very properly with the daring garlic flavours of the octopus.

  2. Crushed potato salad with parmesan (photograph above) dressed with the flavour-loaded leftover marinade from the octopus. I boiled some child potatoes with the octopus for the final half-hour, then drizzled over the leftover marinade, added an additional squeeze of lemon and olive oil (I used to be somewhat quick on dressing), sprinkled generously with parmesan, pinch of parsley, then served it on the aspect with the octopus.


I do know this recipe will likely be removed from the most well-liked on this web site, being that octopus will not be, properly, you already know, hen breast. 😂 And it makes me somewhat unhappy to think about all these individuals on this world who won’t ever expertise the awesomeness that’s child octopus.

However for these of you studying, I actually hope you give this a go sometime! It’s somewhat particular, not one thing you could find at your ordinary suburban eating places. And it’s simply really easy!

What do you assume?? Have I satisfied you to present it a strive? In the event you make it, please let me know what you assume! I hope you like it as a lot as I do. – Nagi x

Watch methods to make it

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Crispy marinated child octopus


Faucet or hover to scale

Recipe video above. This is a simple, outrageously scrumptious option to prepare dinner child octopus: simmered till tender, marinated in daring Mediterranean flavours, seared till crispy. Add a Greek Salad, bread for mopping and a glass of chilled wine for the right summer season meal!2 kg / 4 lb uncooked child octopus will serve 5 to six individuals as a important – it shrinks fairly considerably. It would even be higher the subsequent day, so sit up for leftovers!


  • Braising – Put all of the braising liquid components in a big pot and produce to a boil over excessive warmth. Add octopus, deliver again as much as the boil, then scale back the warmth to low so the water is simmering very, very gently. Scoop off and discard scum off the floor when it accumulates.

  • Braise 1 hour till tender, first checking on the 45 minute mark, or till octopus is tender (take somewhat nibble to verify!).

  • Drain octopus in a colander. Select and discard the bay leaves, onion and many others. Switch octopus right into a bowl.

  • Marinate – Combine marinade components in a bowl. Pour over the octopus (whereas nonetheless sizzling). Toss, permit to completely cool, cowl with cling wrap then marinate in a single day within the fridge. (Observe 4)

  • Cook dinner till crispy (BBQ) – Warmth a BBQ sizzling plate on medium excessive till sizzling. Unfold oil throughout the recent plate. Use tongs to switch the octopus onto the BBQ (go away residual oil behind), unfold out and prepare dinner for 3 to five minutes, rotating as wanted to brown throughout, and most particularly making certain the legs are golden and crispy. (Range – use a big skillet, prepare dinner in 2 or 3 batches).

  • Serve – Pile octopus on a plate. Sprinkle with parsley and chilli, add lemon wedges. EAT and be comfortable! Serve with bread for mopping or see Observe 4 for crushed potatoes pictured in put up dressed with residual marinade.

Recipe Notes:

1. Child octopus is offered recent and frozen. I purchase mine frozen in 2 kg / 4 lb blocks at my native seafood store. Thaw, drain properly, then use per recipe. No have to peel the pores and skin, it’s cooked till tender. You gained’t even discover the pores and skin.
Tenderness – straightforward to inform when it’s prepared, it ought to be tender however not overcooked so it will get mushy. Begin checking at 45 minutes. Mine are normally finished in 1 hour, for barely bigger ones it would take 70 minutes.
Massive octopus legs – Maintain entire and comply with recipe as written. They need to take across the identical time to change into tender regardless that they’re thicker.
Recent octopus can take somewhat longer than frozen as freezing kick-starts the tenderising course of.
2. Smashed garlic cloves – go away the pores and skin on. Place the aspect of a chef’s knife on the garlic then bang with the palm of your hand to make the garlic burst open however largely maintain collectively. Garlic flavour will infuse into the braising liquid however it’s straightforward to select later.
3. Marinating – Don’t shortcut this. Minimal 12 hours, 24 hours is greatest for optimum flavour infusion!
4. Crushed potatoes – I boiled 500g child potatoes with the octopus for the final half-hour. Calmly crushed them and poured over the residual marinade after eradicating the octopus to prepare dinner it (it’s flavour loaded, don’t waste it!!)
5. Leftovers will hold for two days within the fridge. I swear it’s even higher the subsequent day!
Diet per serving, assuming 6 servings and three tbsp of oil in marinade will not be consumed.

Diet Data:

Energy: 394cal (20%)Carbohydrates: 12g (4%)Protein: 50g (100%)Fats: 15g (23%)Saturated Fats: 2g (13%)Polyunsaturated Fats: 2gMonounsaturated Fats: 9gTrans Fats: 0.01gLdl cholesterol: 160mg (53%)Sodium: 1777mg (77%)Potassium: 1241mg (35%)Fiber: 1g (4%)Sugar: 1g (1%)Vitamin A: 609IU (12%)Vitamin C: 23mg (28%)Calcium: 218mg (22%)Iron: 18mg (100%)

Lifetime of Dozer

My, that’s one very lengthy tongue.

Dozer long tongue

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