Charred Baby Octopus with Grilled Bread and Tomato Sauce

Adapted by
February 2008
Yield: 4 Servings


2 pounds cleaned and tenderized fresh baby octopus
2 lemons, quartered
1 carrot, quartered
1 small red onion, quartered
1 stalk celery, quartered
1 cup white wine
4 sprigs fresh thyme
1 bay leaf
4 cloves garlic, smashed
Kosher salt
Tomato Sauce
¼ yellow onion, finely chopped
10 ounces whole Italian imported plum tomatoes
¼ carrot, peeled and finely grated
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
2 sprigs fresh basil
Kosher salt
Lemon-Oregano Oil
1 lemon, segmented
6 sprigs oregano
¼ cup olive oil
To Assemble and Serve
4 slices baguette


For the Octopus

Combine octopus, lemon, carrot, onion, celery, wine, thyme, bay leaf, and garlic in a pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil and lower to a simmer and cook 1 to 2 hours, or until octopus is tender. Remove pot from heat and let octopus cool down in the liquid until cool enough to handle. Remove from liquid, season, and reserve.

For the Tomato Sauce

Drain tomatoes from their juice and chop finely. Sweat onion, carrot and basil in olive oil until soft. Raise heat and add tomatoes. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook, stirring often for 20 minutes. Reserve warm.

For the Lemon-Oregano Oil

Combine lemon, oregano and oil and mix.

To Assemble and Serve

Remove Octopus form liquid and place on a hot grill until lightly charred on all sides. Remove from grill and toss in a bowl with Lemon-Oregano Vinaigrette. Slice four thick slices of baguette and grill on both sides. Spoon tomato sauce on plate, place bread in middle, and top with Octopus. Drizzle Vinaigrette over and around Octopus and serve immediately.