Zeke Koch's Note:
This recipe is adapted from the wonderful "Cuisine of the Water Gods" which is sadly out of print. It's hands down my favorite octopus recipe. It seems like a lot of work the first time you make it, but trust me, this will blow your mind. Even the most squeamish folks I know love it.
My Private Note
Units: US | Metric
- 2 medium onions
- 2 heads garlic
- 4 1/2 lbs octopus (I used baby ones)
- 2 bunches parsley
- 2 bunches cilantro
- 1 teaspoon black peppercorns
- 4 fresh green serrano chilies
- 16 cups water
- 2 cups light beer
- 6 cups water
- 16 medium plum tomatoes
- 1 1/2 medium white onions (peeled and sliced)
- 6 garlic cloves (peeled)
- 14 fresh green serrano chilies
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 6 garlic cloves
- 8 garlic cloves
- 1/2 cup cilantro leaf
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt (to taste)
- 1First roast 2 medium onion and 2 heads garlic in the oven (at 425 for 20 minutes or so until they start to caramelize). Alternately you can pan roast them in a cast iron skillet.
- 2In a large pot place roasted onion and garlic, octopus, 2 bunches parsley & cilantro, peppercorns, 4 serrano chiles (whole), 16 cups water and beer.
- 3Boil for 1 1/2 to two hours.
- 4Remove from heat and let the octopus cool in the liquid while you start the ranchero sauce.
- 5Bring 6 cups of water to boil with 16 plum tomatoes, 14 serranos, 1 1/2 sliced tomatoes and 6 cloves of garlic and simmer for 30 minutes.
- 6Strain out the solids (saving the Ranchero broth), puree the solids in a blender or Cuisinart with 1 1/2 cups or the retained broth.
- 7Now, heat 1/2 cup olive oil in a tall thick pot and add 6 cloves of garlic. Simmer the garlic until it turns golden, remove them with a slotted spoon and carefully pour in the Ranchero sauce. This will cause splattering so I strongly encourage long sleeves. Stir like mad for the first few minutes until it's a gentle simmer. Cook for 30 minutes.
- 8Now strain the liquid from the simmered octopus and in a separate pan cook down to 3 cups. This should take about 30 minutes. Meanwhile separate the octopus from the veggies and toss the veggies.
- 9While the ranchero sauce and octopus are simmering down take the final 6 cloves of garlic, 1/2 cup of cilantro and salt and either in a pestle or a blender puree into a smooth paste.
- 10Add the paste, octopus and reduced octopus stock to the ranchero sauce and cook for a final 20 minutes.
- 11I sometimes split this recipe over two days (make the octopus one night and the ranchero the next).
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Nutritional Facts for Octopus in Ranchero Sauce
Serving Size: 1 (1030 g)
Servings Per Recipe: 10
- Amount Per Serving
- % Daily Value
- Calories 371.9
- Calories from Fat 121
- Total Fat 13.4 g
- Saturated Fat 2.0 g
- Cholesterol 97.9 mg
- Sodium 855.3 mg
- Total Carbohydrate 26.8 g
- Dietary Fiber 3.7 g
- Sugars 8.6 g
- Protein 34.8 g