( SERVES 8 )
Octopus and pearl barley
|1||Lemon, cut in half|
|1½ kgs||Octopus, cleaned|
|2 cloves||Garlic, peeled|
|3 sprigs||Lemon thyme|
|1 Tbsp||Olive oil|
|½||Onion, finely chopped|
|650 ml||Chicken stock|
|200 g||Pearl barley|
|40 ml||Squid ink|
|1 Tbsp||Olive oil|
|½||Onion, peeled and finely diced|
|2 tsp||Curry powder|
|100 ml||White wine|
|200 ml||Coconut milk|
Octous and pearl barley
- Heat the oven to 180C. Rinse the octopus and place in a casserole with the lemon, garlic, bay and lemon thyme. There is no need to add liquid as the octopus releases a lot during cooking. Do not add any salt.
- Put the lid on and cook in the oven until soft and tender, about 1¾ hours. Remove the lid and leave the octopus to cool in its liquid.
- To cook the pearl barley, heat a saucepan over a medium-high heat and drizzle in the olive oil. Add the onion and sweat over a medium heat for 1 minute, then add the pearl barley and cook, stirring, for 1 minute.
- Add half chicken stock and simmer until it is all absorbed before adding the rest.
- Cook over a medium heat until the pearl barley grains swell and soften, yet remain firm to the bite, about 25 minutes; it should be moist but not too wet. Tip in the squid ink and stir to coat the grains.
- Strain 400ml of the cooking liquor from the octopus to use for the sauce. Heat a saucepan over a medium-high heat and drizzle in the olive oil.
- Add the onion and sweat for 2 minutes, then add the spices and cook, stirring for 1 minute. Add the wine, stirring to deglaze, then pour in the 400ml reserved octopus liquor and bring to the boil.
- Simmer to reduce over a medium heat for about 10 minutes. Pour in the coconut milk and cream and continue to simmer for 5 minutes to make a vibrant sauce. Correct the seasoning with a pinch of salt and a few twists of white pepper.
- To cook the samphire, melt butter over a medium-high heat, add the samphire and cook, tossing, for 2 minutes.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Cut the octopus into bite-sized pieces and gently reheat in a little of its cooking juice or some of the sauce.
- Divide the pearl barley between warmed serving bowls and spoon the samphire on top. Arrange the octopus in the middle.
- Froth the sauce, using a handheld stick blender to make it foamy and spoon around the samphire. Sprinkle with lime zest to finish.