Slow Braised Baby Octopus

Cook time 1 hr 30 min
Servings 6


2 tbsp olive oil
1 large red onion, cut into 1cm dice
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 large carrot, cut into 1cm dice
2 sticks celery, cut into 1cm dice
1 small fennel bulb, cut into 1cm dice
1 tsp coriander seeds, toasted and crushed in a mortar and pestle
1 bay leaf
2 sprigs of Oregano, leaves picked
1.2kg baby octopus, cleaned, chopped
1 x 410g can of Ardmona Crushed Tomatoes
2 1/2 cups (625ml) red wine
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
½ tsp dried mint
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 cup pitted Kalamata olives, halved
Freshly chopped parsley and crusty baguette, to serve

Slow Braised Baby Octopus


Heat the oil in a medium heavy-based casserole dish over medium-high heat. Add the onion, garlic, carrot, celery, fennel, coriander seeds, bay leaf, mint, oregano and cook for 8-10 minutes, or until softened. Add the octopus and cook for 2 to 3 minutes or until it starts to change colour. Add wine, reduce for a minute to cook off the alchohol and then add the tomatoes, vinegar and sugar. Stir and bring to the boil, reducing the heat to a gentle simmer and cook with the lid on for 1 hour to 1 hour 15 minutes or until octopus is tender and sauce has thickened slightly, adding the olives for the last 10 minutes of cooking time. Season to taste.

Sprinkle with parsley and the reserved fennel fronds and serve with crusty bread.