The octopus is the most renown cephalopod mollusc and, despite its unique taste and texture, it is one of the most consumed seafood.Thanks to the low content in calories and its cooking versatility, it is a good fit for a number of recipes which often pose a challenge to cooks and chefs, as the huge difficulty in when cooking it is keeping it tender. Octopus flesh is very rich in connective tissue so it needs a period of “ageing” or “beating” and cautious cooking methods, in order to keep its flesh tender and easy to digest; in fact, it takes very little to turn these tender molluscs into tough and chewy chunks.
You can overcome these difficulties and save a lot of time when cooking by using waveco® and its induced maturation©: thanks to this innovative technique, we can avoid the “ageing” period and the deep-freezing, and instead use a fresh product which has preserved all the delicate nutritional properties while at the same time achieving an incomparable result in terms of tenderness, colour and shelf life.
Let’s test waveco® with the preparation of this recipe: “Octopus with Fermented Potatoes and Fermented Apple and Celery Extract”. To prepare this recipe, you will need: 100 gr of octopus, 100 gr of potatoes, organic green apple, celery, vinegar, herbs.
Take 100 gr of fresh (not frozen) octopus, put it into a bag and run induced maturation© for 90 minutes. Then, start waveco®’s low potential temperature cooking for 60 minutes at 55 °C. At the end of the process, thanks to waveco®’s mechanical massage the octopus’ fibres will be loosened and its flesh will be tender. During cooking, the food does not lose weight, colour or taste.
FOCUS ON PROCESSING CEPHALOPODS
The flesh of this category of molluscs is extremely rich in connective tissue, which is why it needs extra care during preparation. Connective tissue fibres do not dissolve into gelatin when cooked, so they need to undergo a process to break them up (e.g. Freezing) and loosen the tissues in order to get tender and non-fibrous flesh after prolonged cooking. The whole process entails a loss in nutritional and organoleptic qualities. However, things are different with waveco®: a fresh product is used and after induced maturation© and short cooking period, your octopus will be tender with all its properties retained.
Take 100 gr of potatoes, peel them and julienne cut them. Put everything into a bag with water and run induced maturation© for 30 minutes. This pretreatment allows us to remove the excess starch. Take the potatoes out of the bag , rinse them and put them back into the bag with a vinegar-based solution and run induced maturation© for 60 minutes. At the end of the process, store the bag in the fridge at +4 °C for 15 days. After that, the potatoes will have fermented and retained all its organoleptic properties, ensuring complete food safety.
FOCUS ON FERMENTING POTATOES
Fermentation is a very ancient technique. If performed extremely carefully, it increases the shelf life of food, while changing its taste and texture. Fermentation of potatoes is a particularly complex and long: in fact, the amount of starch in it does now allow for the process to complete successfully in a natural way (chemical yeasts are needed) as bacteria and mould proliferation prevents this from happening. This problem can be solved using waveco®: thanks to induced maturation© we are sure the process will be accelerated and successful in terms of food safety, with no “triggers” required.
FERMENTED APPLE AND CELERY
Take an organic green apple, cut it in half and put it into a bag with water and vinegar run induced maturation© for 90 minutes. At the end of the process, store the bag in the fridge at 4°C for 5 days. Then, take a stick of celery, peel it and put it into a bag with the green apple’s fermentation liquid. Run induced maturation© for 20 minutes and let it rest in the overnight at + 4 °C.
At the end of the two preparations we get two foods which have fermented quickly with no chemical yeasts added, and have retained their colour and had their taste enhanced, while ensuring complete food safety.
Lay the octopus on a serving plate. Add the fermented potatoes garnished with herbs. Peel the fermented apple and blend it with celery and fermentation liquid: use the sauce you obtain to top the plate.
CHEF TECHNICAL FOCUS
Thanks to induced maturation© we can cook octopus avoiding the “ageing” period and reduce cooking times significantly, obtaining a tender food which has retained all its delicate nutrients. With waveco® we are sure that we can quickly get the food fermented, while enhancing the qualities of the product with no chemical yeasts required and ensuring complete food safety.