Serves 4 – 6 people
Much of the secret, if it can be called a secret, of Portuguese cooking is the use of simple basic ingredients that get flavor infusions from various techniques. Two of them are utilized in this recipe: the refogado (sweating onions along with other ingredients) and using stocks (in this case an octopus stock). Fresh octopus can sometimes be very hard to find but with this recipe frozen is best as the freezing process intensifies the flavor and tenderizes the tough octopus meat. Octopus is very tough and must be cooked 60 minutes to tenderize it. It is worth noting that octopus shrinks while cooking so don’t be alarmed when the recipe calls for 2…they will shrink! The piri piri (or Portuguese hot sauce) should be used as it brings the dish to life but if you are sensitive to spicy foods then omit it. You can boil the Octopus ahead of time and refrigerate it for a day or two but beyond that it will shrivel and dry out.