foodie

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Ensalada de Pulpo y Garbanzos (Octopus and Chickpeas Salad)

This salad has many variations, Cubans make it with canned octopus and chayote, Italians and Greeks also prepare their own version adding or omitting a few ingredients, but no matter what version you make, it is always a delicious way to start a meal.



Ingredients for 4 servings

2 pounds fresh or defrosted clean octopus
1 onion halved
2 garlic cloves, peeled
1 can chickpeas 16 Oz
1/2 cup roasted red peppers drained and cut into strips
1/2 cup minced cilantro
1/2 cup olive oil
1/3 cup thinly sliced red onion
2 1/2 tablespoons Sherry vinegar
2 tablespoons lemon juice
Salt and pepper.

Wash the octopus over running water making sure is clean. In a pressure cooker, place the octopus with enough water to cover, the halved onion and the garlic cloves. Bring to a boil over high heat and seal the cooker. Once the pressure is reached lower the temperature to medium  and cook for about 20 minutes. Use quick pressure release, remove the octopus and drain. Discard the cooking water.

Place the octopus in a bowl with cold water to cool. Once is cold enough to handle, over running water rub w the octopus with your hands to remove the dark outer skin, it should come off very easy.

Heat a cast iron grill or barbecue. Cut the octopus into big pieces, leaving the tentacles whole. Rub with salt and 2 tablespoons olive oil and grill until crisp and brown. Remove from the heat and cut into smaller pieces or leave whole if you want to serve it on top of the salad.



In a salad bowl place the chickpeas drained, the roasted red peppers, red onion, cilantro. In a small bowl mix the olive oil and vinegar, lemon juice and season with salt and pepper. Add oil mix to the salad bowl and mix well.
Before serving add the octopus to the salad and mix.