Greek Salad w/ Quinoa, Octopus & Chick Peas
Quinoa gets a Greek touch in this easy salad with chick peas, octopus, tomatoes, and fresh herbs. To find the Greek olive oil and Greek balsamic vinegar used in this recipe, click here.
- 1 small octopus or pulpo*, about 1 ½ - 2 pounds (750 g – 1 kilo) total
- ½ cup Vrisi 36 extra virgin Greek olive oil
- 3 tablespoons Vrisi 36 Greek balsamic vinegar
- 3-4 fresh oregano sprigs
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 cup quinoa
- 15 cherry or teardrop tomatoes, halved
- 1 red onion, diced
- 1 small fennel bulb, diced
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 ½ cups cooked chick peas (good quality canned are fine)
- 1/2 cup of any chopped fresh herbs of choice (basil, mint, oregano, parsley, cilantro, dill)
- Grated zest of 1 lemon
- Salt, pepper to taste
- Clean the octopus or pulpo: Cut off and discard the sack just below the eyes. Cut out the beaklike mouth. Cut along the tentacles into individual pieces. Place in a medium saucepan with 2 tablespoons olive oil, 1 tablespoon balsamic, the oregano sprigs, bay leaves and peppercorns. Cover and cook over very low heat until the tentacles are tender, about 35 – 40 minutes. Set aside.
- Place the quinoa in a medium saucepan with enough water to cover by 3 inches / 7/5 cm. Bring to a gentle boil, salt lightly and cook for about 15 minutes, until tender and popped. Drain.
- While the quinoa is cooking, sauté the onion, fennel and garlic in a 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a medium frying pan over medium heat.
- Remove the octopus from the pot, drain and cut into chunks. (If desired, you can add a little extra texture and flavor by searing it slightly in a ridged, nonstick frying pan before cutting.)
- Combine the quinoa, octopus, onion-fennel-garlic mixture, tomatoes, chick peas and herbs in a mixing bowl. Season to taste with salt, pepper and lemon zest. Toss with remaining olive oil and vinegar and serve.
- If octopus is too exotic for you, feel free to substitute it with about 2 cups of any seafood of choice, such as calamari, mussels, or shrimp, or any combination of them.
Greek Food - Greek Cooking - Greek Recipes by Diane Kochilas http://www.dianekochilas.com/