Brazilian Octopus Salad (Salada de Polvo)
Salada de Polvo, or Octopus Salad is a delicious Brazilian style dish that is unbelievably flavorful and unique. It is a very popular dish in the South American continent because of its bursting flavor and unique ingredients. Octopus is a very underutilized ingredient in many dishes yet is so tasty and absorbs the flavor of surrounding ingredients like no other. This dish is quite simple to make yet the ingredients might be a bit more of a hassle to find yet well worth the effort. I would definitely fully recommend trying this dish out if you have not before as it will surely impress, especially if you are making for guests.
2 lbs. Baby Octopus
1 Large red onion, finely chopped
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1/4 cup finely chopped green bell pepper
1/4 cup finely chopped red bell pepper
3 limes, halved
3/4 cup olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
1 head boston or butterleaf lettuce, washed dried, and thinly sliced
Malagueta Pepper sauce
1) Clean the octopus by turning it inside out and removing the eyes and the small bone at the bottom of the head.
2) Wash thoroughly in cold water.
3) Bring a large pot of salted water to boil, over medium high heat. Cook the octopus for 30 to 40 minutes, depending on their size, or until they can be easily pierced with a fork. Drain and cool under cold running water. (It is necessary to peel larger octopus.)
4) In a large bowl combine the onion, parsley, cilantro, green and red pepper, the juice of 1/2 lime, and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Set Aside.
5) Cut the octopus in quarter-inch slices. Add to the onion mixture and marinate for 1/2 hour. Transfer to a large platter and squeeze the remaining limes over the octopus. Cover and set aside to marinate for another half hour.
6) Serve with mounds of the julienned lettuce and Malagueta Pepper sauce and enjoy!