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Ensalada de Pulpo (Octopus Salad)


  • 4 bay leaves
  • 2 teaspoons whole peppercorns
  • 1/4 cup white vinegar
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 rosemary sprig
  • 3 lbs of octopus 1 large one or 5-6 small ones
  • 1/2 onion chopped
  • 1 bell pepper chopped
  • 15 pimento olives halved
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley chopped
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and Pepper


  1. Place the frozen octopus in a large stock pot. Cover with water, and add in the bay leaves, rosemary, garlic, peppercorns, white vinegar and a few pinches of salt.
  2. Bring the mixture to a boil, and cook the octopus until it’s tender. You can poke the thickest part of it with a knife. If it slides in easily, it’s ready. A large octopus will take about an hour, the baby ones take about 30 minutes.
  3. When the octopus is done, remove it from the pan, and allow to cool for a few minutes. You can rinse it off to remove any loose skin and residue.
  4. Chop the octopus into chunks, and place in a bowl. Add in the chopped onion, pepper, olives, parsley, olives, lemon zest, red wine vinegar, and olive oil.
  5. Stir the mixture together, then season with salt and pepper to taste. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours, so the flavors can marry.