Grilled Octopus with Preserved Lemon and Walnut Tarator by Maria O'Meagher

Grilled Octopus with Preserved Lemon and Walnut Tarator by Maria O'Meagher

Ingredients

1 kg octopus hands (approximately 6 individual tentacles)
Lime wedge to serve

Marinade:

500 ml extra virgin olive oil
250 ml red wine vinegar
Sea salt and pepper to taste
Sprinkle dried chilli paste
3 peeled garlic cloves, crushed
1/3 bunch parsley, chopped

Walnut Tarator:

190 g panko crumbs soaked in milk
400 g walnuts
3 garlic cloves
Juice of 1 lemon
500 g strained Greek Yoghurt
Sea salt and pepper to taste

Preserved Lemon*:

5 lemons
1/4 cup salt, more if desired
5 to 6 coriander seeds
3 to 4 black peppercorns
1 bay leaf
Lemon juice, if required

Method

Rinse octopus and cut into individual tentacles. Simmer octopus in boiling water for 40 minutes with a splash of red wine vinegar and salt. Remove from heat and let cool. Peel the skin from the octopus using a tea towel. Place the peeled octopus and marinade into large bowl and marinate in the fridge overnight.

Tarator:

Soak panko crumbs in milk to cover. Squeeze dry and set aside. Place garlic into a food processor with motor running, then add nuts until finely ground. Add panko crumbs, lemon juice and strained Greek yoghurt and process until smooth. Transfer to a bowl, then stir in salt and pepper.

Preserved Lemon:

You can place all these ingredients into a streilised jar and cure in the fridge for a month before use, or you can buy preserved lemons from your nearest providore or supermarket.

Remove octopus from marinade and place on a preheated hot grill and sear for about 2-3 minutes on both sides. Remove from the grill and place on serving plate.

Sprinkle octopus with finely diced preserved lemon, serve with a dollop of walnut terator and wedge of lime on the side and finish with a generous drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.

Recipe provided by Aristotle's Neutral Bay