This is a true representation of classic and simple Greek cookery. You can't get this wrong or it'll be a disaster! This is a great ouzo meze and lasts for weeks in your fridge. Ask you fishmonger for beaten octopus.
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- 1kg large, cleaned octopus
- 4 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1/2 tbsp thyme, chopped
- 150ml red wine vinegar
- 150ml olive oil
- 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
- 1 tbsp ground cumin
- 1/2 tsp freshly ground white pepper
- salt to taste
- chickpea cress, to garnish
· Place octopus in a large saucepan with 3/4 cup water and simmer, covered, for one hour.
· Remove octopus and liquid from pan and place in a large bowl, cover with cling film and refrigerate.
· Once cold, remove octopus from liquid and cut into thin slices.
· Take garlic, thyme, red wine vinegar, olive oil, paprika, cumin and add to sliced octopus (see note). Season with salt and ground white pepper, to taste.
· Note: When buying octopus ask your fishmonger for "beaten octopus" as it will be more tender. Also, make sure you peel the skin off the octopus before cooking.
· Smoked paprika can generally be bought at your local supermarket. If it's the first time you've ever used it, I would suggest start with a mild paprika (it comes sweet, semi-sweet and hot) until you become accustomed to its taste.