The Condiment Queen. That’s what they call me. If it is going to be eaten, it needs a sauce, a jus, a mayonnaise, a toasted nut, a seasoning, a final touch of flavour and texture to bring the perfect dish together.
At all times my herb garden is full of my favourite herbs, my pantry is full of almost every nut, spice, vinegar and oil, and my fridge is loaded with sauces, preserves and pickles. That is what I consider staples.
Being a food blogger you do get approached by lots of different companies with different offers. Most of these I decline because it doesn’t suit my blog, I don’t believe in the product or it will just plain piss my readers off. However, sometimes you get an email that has you doing a little happy dance at your desk and makes you feel just a bit special. Always Fresh is a brand that I constantly have in my fridge and pantry. They are always my first choice and on any given day, there will be at least 5 items in my kitchen. I love their capers, peppers, pickles and vinegars. So when I opened an email with the opportunity to work with them. It was a no brainer.
Using some of my favourite pantry essentials, from one of my favourite pantry essential brands, I have made you something fun. It is a light but yummy tapas dish, dinner party entree, or could also be easily turned into finger food if the octopus was cut smaller and served on a disk of fried kipfler potato or a crispy bagel chip. When you have good staples, you have a good meal. Enjoy.
Serves 4 as an entree
2 Always Fresh Roasted Peppers
1/2 clove of garlic
1/2 cup of blanched almonds
1 tbs tomato puree
2 tbs Always Fresh White Balsamic Vinegar
1 tsp smoked paprika
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 cup olive oil
Salt to taste
1 large octopus
1 small brown onion, quartered
2 fresh bay leaves
4 radish, thinly sliced
1/2 cup parsley, picked
4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced and fried into garlic chips
4 Always Fresh Chilli Peppers Mild, Green
To poach the octopus, bring a large saucepan of salted water, the onion and bay leaves to the boil. Dunk the octopus in the water 3 times to blanch and then leave in the pot submerged. Bring back to a very light simmer and cook, covered, very low for 2 hours.
To make the romesco, add all ingredients to a food processor and blend until smooth. Set aside until required.
After two hours, drain and slightly cool the octopus. Cut off the legs and discard the head. If you do not have a BBQ or a charcoal grill, you can just serve the octopus legs just like this, however, I like to flame grill it for a bit of extra flavour. Lightly oil and grill your octopus legs.
To serve, smear the plate with some romesco sauce, place the octopus legs, the green chilli and the radish disks and then sprinkle with the parsley and garlic chips. Finish with a drizzle of oil and a sprinkling of sea salt.