25 May La Brava Recipes #1: Octopus à La Brava
An easy, original and closer-to-home alternative to the classic Galician-style (or ‘á feira’) octopus. In fact, as well as the Atlantic and Cantabrian coasts, the Mediterranean is the main breeding ground for this valued cephalopod in Europe. On the Costa Brava, one of the most desirable spots for fans of submarine fishing, octopus is one of the most highly prized catches.
As such, to inaugurate our La Brava Recipes section, we want to celebrate this delicacy with a simple recipe that goes down a treat at any time of year. Based on octopus, potatoes and, of course, the best pilsner beer, it’s sure to become a firm favourite! Enjoy!
- 1 medium octopus (max. 2 kg)
- 3 bottles of La Brava
- 1 bulb of garlic
- 4 potatoes
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 ñora peppers
- Olive oil
- Prepare the octopus for cooking: it’s a good idea to clean it then put it in the freezer for a day to tenderise it.
- Boil the octopus in a large pot of water to let it release all its juices and “scare it”: in other words, when the water is bubbling take it out and put it back in the water four or five times. This technique helps to improve the texture.
- Cover the pot and leave to cook until soft. Once boiled, leave it to rest in its juices.
- Slice the potatoes and place them in a baking tray along with the garlic bulb cut in half, the hydrated ñora peppers cut into strips, the bay leaves and the octopus.
- Add generous amounts of beer so it serves as a cooking liquid along with the octopus’ own juices. Important: use enough beer to prevent the octopus from drying out.
- Place the tray in the oven at 180º. Cook for 1 hour covered with tin foil and then for a further 20 minutes uncovered.
- Take the octopus out, separate and discard the head. Cut the tentacles into bite-sized pieces.
- Mash the potatoes, ñora peppers and the pulp from some of the garlic cloves with the cooking liquid and olive oil.
- Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve the mashed potato mixture and top with the octopus and some olive oil. Sprinkle with the chopped chives to finish.