This recipe was created for Club House for Chefs by: Jenny Coycochea, Chef of Kettner Exchange in San Diego, CA.
For the Octopus: Start with your octopus in a large bowl. Sprinkle with kosher salt and gently massage the octopus for 10-15 minutes until foamy. Rinse octopus and set aside. Heat chicken stock, wine and garlic in a stock pot until simmering. Gently lower the octopus into the pot and simmer for 20 minutes. Remove the octopus and place into an ice bath until cool. Remove the legs of the octopus and place into sous vide bags with olive oil, smashed garlic gloves, and peppercorns. Set a water circulator to 73 degrees C and cook for 6 hours. Remove from the water circulator into an ice bath and cool before storing in the refrigerator until ready to use.
For the Crispy Octopus Calamari: Soak octopus head in buttermilk and hot sauce overnight. Mix flour together with spices and salt. Toss octopus head pieces with the flour. Heat oil to 350 degrees F. Fry octopus pieces until golden and crispy.
For the Harissa Paste: Bring a small pot of water to a boil. Add dried chilies and turn off heat. Let chilies steep and soften for 20-30 minutes. Reserve 1/3 cup of steeping water. In a small skillet, toast whole spices until fragrant, remove from heat. Place soaked chilies, spices and remaining ingredients in a blender. Blend until smooth using steeping water as necessary to thin mixture until very smooth and blended. Should be a smooth paste.
For the Chermoula: Place all ingredients in a blender (except water), blend until smooth, using water as necessary to thin sauce.
For the Crispy Potatoes: Place potatoes in a small baking dish (a ½ pan works great). Cover with duck fat. Add salt, garlic, thyme and lemon peel and cover. Bake at 350 degrees F until tender. Cool. Heat oil to 350 degrees F. Break potatoes into large pieces and fry until crispy. Season with salt and pepper.
Smoked Paprika Aioli: Mix all ingredients together until smooth.
To Assemble: Heat a medium sized cast iron skillet until warm. Heat 1 tsp high smoke point oil. Place the octopus legs in the cast iron and sear until brown on each side. Toss with 1 tablespoon of Harissa paste mixed with 2 tablespoons chicken stock and 1 tablespoon salted butter until evenly coated. Serve with chermoula, octopus head ‘Calamari’, crispy potatoes and smoked paprika aioli. Garnish with fresh origins micro celery gold splash.