Cooking Octopus - Tips and Information

Octopus is an integral part of Mediterranean cuisine. It is also widely eaten in Asia.

However, the popularity of this strange looking creature has still to reach countries such as the United States and the United Kingdom. It seems that although most think it's fascinating to look at, few actually want to taste it.

While you will find it served in many restaurants across the globe, many people feel that cooking octopus at home requires a lot of skill.

Octopus can be cooked and eaten in various ways. Asian countries use it mainly as sushi, while Mediterranean countries such as Italy, Greece and Malta cook it for salads, stews, pasta and also as a stand-alone appetizer.

The most important thing that you need to keep in mind when cooking octopus is that its meat is extremely tough when raw. It may not look like it, but it definitely is!

So in order to get a tasty octopus meal, you need to tenderize the meat before you cook it.

Freezing the octopus for a few days before cooking it, is one way of doing this. Another way is to boil the meat for a couple of hours before you proceed to cook it.

Some resort to beating the octopus against a very hard surface such as a table. In some Mediterranean fishing villages, you will actually see fishermen beat the octopus against the rocks as soon as they catch it. Others prefer to cook the octopus slowly for many hours until it becomes tender.

To see whether the octopus has become tender, you need to pierce it. If the utensil that you're using penetrates the meat with little resistance, then it means that the octopus is tender enough.

In order to give it a more palatable flavor, the octopus can be simmered in wine or olive oil.

Once the octopus meat is tenderized then there are various octopus recipes that you can choose from. And whats more, most of them are quite easy to prepare.

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