Festival Squid with Potatoes - Chef Recipe by Stevan Paul
Festival Squid with Potatoes - Chef Recipe by Stevan Paul

Festival Squid with Potatoes - Chef Recipe by Stevan Paul


Soft-boiled squid with potatoes is a Galician national dish and a very popular tapa. Even today, pulpo á feira ("festive squid") is a must at any major event. This squid dish is traditionally served with potatoes on wooden boards.

2 onions
Olive oil
800 g squid (frozen and defrosted)*
1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
650 g waxy potatoes
Freshly ground black pepper
Juice of 1 lemon
1 tsp sweet paprika powder
1 pinch hot paprika powder
A few sprigs flat-leaf parsley and basil

* Using frozen squid is perfectly fine, as freezing makes it tender, and you won't need to pound it for tenderising – in the classic version, the freshly caught squid is pounded against the nearest harbour wall.


Peel and slice the onions, then sauté until translucent in 8 tablespoons of olive oil. Add the squid and top with water until it is just covered. Add the red wine vinegar, bring to a boil, cover and simmer over low heat until soft, about 1.5–2 hours.

Remove the squid from its broth and set aside. Peel and slice the potatoes. Strain the liquid through a sieve, season with salt and bring to a boil again. Add the potato slices and cook until done but still firm to the bite, about 8–10 minutes.

Meanwhile, clean the squid and cut into small pieces. Drain the potatoes and briefly rinse under cold water. They’re best if still a little warm. Serve the potatoes and squid on a wooden board. Season with salt and pepper, drizzle with lemon juice to taste and plenty of olive oil. Dust with the two types of paprika powder and garnish with freshly picked parsley and basil leaves.

Best paired with:


Ojos de Brujo is a band that has unfortunately disbanded. Their distinctive mix of styles, ranging from Latin to hip-hop flamenco, funk and rumba, made them Spanish superstars. Their 2002 album “Bari” would be my first choice for a Spanish blue hour.

Credits: Images and recipes from Dining at Dusk by Stevan Paul, photography by Daniela Haug. Murdoch Books RRP $39.99. Out now.

Photo Credits: Daniela Haug.