Recipe courtesy of Chef Mark Pomaski of Moon & Turtle, Hilo Hawai‘i
Photography courtesy of Soni Pomaski
1 large (3-4lb) octopus, cleaned
5 cloves garlic
2 bay leaves
1 tea bag (black, green, or oolong)
3-4 large ripe tomatoes, cut into bit sized pieces
1 medium sweet onion, thinly sliced
2-3 stalks scallion, green parts only, julienned and rinsed in cold water 1 bunch watercress, washed, drained and cut into ¾ inch pieces
12 large cloves garlic
1.5 oz fish sauce
2 oz rice vinegar
2 oz lemon juice
Place all dressing ingredients into a high power blender and puree until garlic is completely broken down. Un-used dressing will keep one week.
Place octopus, garlic, bay leaves and tea bag in a pres-sure cooker and cover with salted water (use ¼ cup salt per ½ gallon water, or less to taste).
Bring to full pressure, cook for 15 minutes, and use quick release method to relieve pressure. Allow octopus to cool to room tempurture in its cooking liquid, strain, and chill. (Reserve cooking liquid for use in another reci-pe, such as a seafood soup.)
Once chilled, divide into 4 sections by separating the head and tentacles and cutting each piece in half.
Toss lightly with vegetable oil and grill over high heat until warmed through and slightly charred.
Slice into bite-sized pieces and place into a large mixing bowl along with tomato and sweet onion.
Gently toss with a liberal amount of dressing and plate onto a bed of watercress. Garnish with scallions.
Serves 4-6 as an appetizer.