Clay's Kitchen : Ricette Italiane (Italian Recipes)

Ricette Italiane (Italian Recipes)

© Copyright 1995-2017, Clay Irving <>, Manhattan Beach, CA USA

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Insalata di Polipo (Grilled Octopus Salad)

Recipe from: Chef Michael White at Fiamma Trattoria and Bar, MGM Grand
Servings: 4

16 ounces cleaned octopus with heads removed, about 1 ½ to 1 ¾ pounds uncleaned
2 cups full-bodied red wine, such as Chianti or Sangiovese
½ cup finely chopped onion
¼ cup finely chopped carrot
¼ cup finely chopped celery
2 sprigs fresh thyme
1 bay leaf
4 cloves unpeeled garlic, crushed
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 lime, juiced

For the Salad:
¾ cup extra-virgin olive oil
½ cup red wine vinegar
2 limes, juiced
1 bunch mint, stems removed, leaves torn into pieces
½ cup chopped green olives, preferably Cerignola (available at specialty olive bars)
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 endives with core removed, julienned
3 cups julienned radicchio leaves
2 cups cooked chickpeas or gigante beans

Put the octopus in a pot with the wine and enough cold water to cover. Add the onions, carrots, celery, thyme, and bay leaf; bring to a gentle simmer over medium heat and cook until opaque, 20 to 30 minutes. Remove the octopus with a slotted spoon and cool. (This may be done a day ahead and refrigerated in a covered bowl.)

Transfer the octopus to a resealable plastic bag and add the garlic, olive oil, and lime juice; seal and marinate in the refrigerator for 2 hours. Remove the octopus from the marinade and set aside.

Preheat a charcoal or gas grill until hot. Position the rack about 5 to 6 inches from the heat.

Combine the olive oil, vinegar, lime juice, mint leaves, and green olives in the jar of a blender and purée into a smooth emulsion. Alternatively, whisk these ingredients together in a small bowl for a chunkier texture. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper and set aside. Toss the endive, radicchio, and chickpeas together in a salad bowl and set aside.

Grill the octopus for 4 to 5 minutes, turning once after 2 to 3 minutes, until it is browned in spots and nicely caramelized but not burned. Remove and cut into bite-size pieces. Toss with the greens and vinaigrette, divide among 4 plates, and serve.

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