Good weather brings with it, among other things, seafood dishes with their unique aroma. Today I am suggesting a different way to eat octopus, one of the most popular dishes in my region (Galicia): Mezzi rigatoni with octopus and cherry. In Italy, especially on the coast, it’s is a very popular pasta dish. You’ll have a super tasty sauce cooking the octopus with the tomatoes and then mixing it with the pasta. This time I prepared it with mezzi rigatoni as it was one of the pasta variety I had at home but you can cook it with any shape you’ve in your pantry.
Don’t wait for a low-fat dish as this is a consistent dish so you won’t probably eat anything else. It’s the way I ate it years ago when I was living in Italy and we usually went the weekends to Rimini, just one-hour driving distance from Bologna. This area is well-known for its piadine, but one day to try a new dish I ordered this seafood dish that I love so I’m sharing with you.
INGREDIENTSfor 6 people
An octopus of one kg (4 oz)
3 kg tomatoes (105 oz)
500 gr (5 cups) mezzi rigatoni
2 garlic cloves
Salt and pepper to taste
Extra virgin olive oil
Freeze the octopus for 48 hours (it is recommended to do it to soften its meat) and remove it from the freezer the night before. In a large pot add water and salt and when the water is boiling “scare” the octopus, this means pulling it out of the water three times, so the octopus does not become stiff during cooking. Usually, we cook an octopus of this size for 35 minutes, but for this recipe, we’ll do it for just 10. Then, set aside.
Now, dip the tomatoes in boiling water to skin them more easily. In a cooking pot, sauté the garlic with a bit of olive oil and later add the tomatoes, basil, salt, and the octopus already cut into slices. Cook at low-medium heat until the water of the tomatoes has disappeared. Add salt and pepper to taste.
In another pot cook al dente the mezzi rigatoni (or the pasta you have at home). Meanwhile, in a pan cook the cherries with a bit of olive oil at low heat. Strain your pasta and add it to the cooking pan. Mix well, serve, add the cherries and decore with basil.
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