How to cook baby octopus: instructions for cleaning and cooking them with sauce, stews, fried and to prepare excellent spaghetti. Tips for the perfect recipe.
Before you seehow to cook baby octopusI want to clarify a concept: ibaby octopusI'm notbaby octopusor little octopuses! Saying "octopus with sauce" or "octopus with sauce" is not exactly the same thing.
Musk octopus and fragolino octopus
Thebaby octopusand the octopus are two different animals. They are both molluscs but the octopus can also reach large dimensions, up to 50-60 cmd in length. The small specimens (called in jargon baby octopus) are distinguished frombaby octopusfor the double rows of suckers carried on the eight tentacles.
Thebaby octopusit is a much smaller mollusk. In addition, there are two variants: the musky octopus and the fragolino octopus. Both baby octopus have a single row of suckers carried on the tentacles.
How are they different? The musky octopus has less valuable and less tender meat. Do not worry, it does not mean that it is not good, but that it lends itself better to making godsbaby octopus with sauceor stewed. If, on the other hand, you intend to prepare somefried baby octopus, you'll want to choose thefragolino octopus. The fragolino octopus that we find on the market is generally very, very small! The meats are so tender that you can lend them tofrying.
How to do ifried baby octopus?
Just clean them and make sure you have chosen the fragolino octopus which, with its tender meat, will take little time to cook.
How to clean baby octopus
The baby octopus are easy toto cookand also to clean. Generally, the cleaning operation is carried out by the fishmonger himself, but on very chaotic days, it could leave something to be desired or you may need to do it yourself at home. So how do you clean octopus?
- Turn your head back just as if it were a glove
- Locate the entrails (they are black) and tear them out with your hands.
- With a pair of scissors, remove the "eyes".
- The "mouth" or "beak" is located in the center of the rays, from where the tentacles branch off. To remove it you will have to press with a finger on the back of the rays of the tentacles. A "black beak" will come out.
- Rinse i baby octopusunder running water and then, beforecook, let it dry on a sheet of absorbent paper.
Especially if you meanfry the baby octopus, you will have to dry them well. Water is the main enemy of frying, so this tip applies to any food you intend to fry.
How to cook baby octopus
We come to the fateful question: then how are baby octopus cooked? If they are small, you cancook them whole, you can preparebaby octopus with sauceto be used as a sauce for pasta (such as linguine and spaghetti) or stewed, to be used as a sauce for pasta…. In both cases (with sauce or stewed) the baby octopus can be served without pasta, simply with a few pieces of toasted bread.
So, if you want to do "baby octopus with sauce“, Know that you are preparing godsbaby octopus. Now let's move on torecipe.
Baby octopus sauce or stewed baby octopus
You can make a "white sauce" or, if you prefer a red sauce, you can add some tomatoes to sauté in the preliminary phase, together with garlic, or simple tomato puree.
With this sauceyou can season spaghetti or other type ofpastalong, or you can serve them, as stated, with pieces of bread as agood seafood appetizer.
Here's what you need for the spaghetti albaby octopus sauce:
- 2 crushed cloves of garlic
- extra virgin olive oil
- 500 gr of small octopus
- 1/2 glass of wine
- 500 ml of tomato paste, or, if you prefer, fresh cherry tomatoes
- 350 gr of linguine
- a sprig of chopped parsley
- dried and chopped hot pepper
For the recipe, you will need to use a large-bottomed saucepan.
- Add the oil and the crushed garlic, heat up and add the baby octopus already cleaned.
- Let the wine evaporate.
- Combine the tomato pulp or fresh cherry tomatoes.
- Cover the saucepan and cook over low heat for 40 minutes.
- Aside, boil the water.
- Add salt only when the water is boiling.
- Adjusted well with the cooking times, you should lower the pasta 30 minutes after putting a cooking baby octopus.
- Drop the spaghetti. Drain them a few minutes before the end of cooking indicated on the package. Keep a glass of cooking water aside, you can use it in an emergency, if the octopus dry out.
- Finish cooking the spaghetti in yours baby octopus sauce. If necessary, add the cooking water of the pasta (this can happen if you have not added tomato paste but only a few tomatoes).
- Stir well, finish cooking for 2-3 minutes, turn off.
- Add the chopped dried chilli and a few chopped parsley leaves.
Yourbaby octopus sauceit's ready!
Do you like dishes based onfish?Then try reading:
- How to clean the fish
- Tub gurnard fish
- Roast fish