For centuries, Greeks have enjoyed delicious platters of fresh seafood, including octopus. Now, this kind of sea delicacy is becoming popular with other restaurants and cultures and can be found in many dishes that are inspired by Latino cuisine. However, some people steer clear because they fear it may taste strange. The guide below discusses this dish in more detail to entice newcomers to try it.
How Is Octopus Prepared?
When pulled from the ocean, octopus is strung up to dry. Since the mollusk is made of mostly water, allowing it to dry out prevents it from getting rubbery when thrown on the grill. Grilled octopus can be described as sweet and succulent with rich flavor. When it’s prepared correctly, many people notice a similar texture to lobster. Some describe the tenderness similar to that of squid.
Octopus is prepared in a variety of ways depending on location, culture, and chefs. When you find it in Latino cuisine, you may find it cooked perfectly with yuzo, potatoes, and roasted tomato sauces.
What Parts Can You Eat?
Most parts of an octopus are edible, including the head and tentacles. However, there are some parts that chefs steer clear from, including the intestines, ink, and beak.
During the cleaning process, all the inedible parts are removed and discarded, while the head and all eight tentacles are prepared for grilling or steaming. Many dishes and chefs prefer to grill up the tentacles since they are the most tender.
Is It Healthy?
Octopus is low-calorie and high in protein, making it an excellent choice for any diet. The mollusk meat is low in fat, high in iron, and holds antioxidants that help you metabolize protein. Latino cuisine takes advantage of this protein source by grilling it up and serving it over spicy sauces, rice, or even in tacos with pico de gallo. No matter how you top it, you can rest assured that octopus makes a healthy meal.
For residents of Queens, Mamajuana Café Queens is the go-to place for Latino cuisine. Located in Woodside, NY, diners can experience everything there is to love about South American and Caribbean cultures. Each dish on their menu captures the flavors of Latino cuisine, including yuca, plantain, ceviche, and pico de gallo. To make a reservation, call (718) 565-6454. To browse their full menu, visit their website.