Tunisian Octopus Salad
3.5 oz of chickpeas
2 spring onions
2 cloves of garlic
Preparing the octopus:
– Wash and remove the inedible parts (beak and eyes)
– Separate the head of the tentacles
– Bake 35 minutes octopus (cold start) in a saucepan and bring to a boil, cut 1 lemon in half 1 bay leaf.
– Remove from heat and let cool in its cooking water. Cut it diagonally season it with salt and pepper. Then marinate the in olive oil with rosemary and garlic for 3 or 4 days.
Preparation of chickpeas:
– Soak the chickpeas with baking soda and salt in water and refrigerate for 24 hours.
– Put them into salted water (cold start). At the first boil, reduce heat to low and cook 1:30.
– Dice tomatoes.
Heat the chickpeas with diced tomatoes, add the spring onions finely chopped, salt, pepper, a dash of black balsamic, 1 dash of lemon and fresh cilantro (coriander).
Meanwhile, reheat in a saucepan the octopus mix then drain.
Place the chickpeas in center of plate and top with warm octopus.
Garnish the plate with three leaves of lettuce, some croutons and green olives.
This is such a simple recipe. You can either ask your fishmonger to clean the octopus for you or you can clean it yourself.
The eyes, the mouth parts and the innards need to be removed and the octopus has to be tenderised prior to cooking.
Tenderising the octopus is a bit of a lengthy process.
The fresh octopus is slapped repeatedly onto a hard surface.
At La Goulette fish market it is possible to see a man slapping an octopus on to the pavement adjacent to the fish market.
Once that is done the octopus is put into a plastic bag and is rubbed in a circular motion until it becomes foamy.
When buying fresh octopus make sure that it has been tenderised otherwise the octopus will be inedible and will be chewy like plastic.