I'm an adventurous eater, and when traveling in Italy, had the chance to discover the amazing flavour of octopus. Not something I have the chance to...
Octopus and tomato are a natural combination, so of course it makes perfect sense that they appear together in this fresh pasta recipe. Variations abound in Italian cooking for octopus, with a classic being the octopus and potato salad - while this variation does spice things up a bit, all the big hitters are here, albeit in different forms. You've got potatoes in the fresh pasta filling, black olives in the sauce, and octopus and tomatoes featuring key roles dressing up the tortelli.
This is a great seafood recipe to prepare once you've tried making handmade pasta a few times - while the steps themselves are straightforward, there is a bit of work involved with ingredients of differing types, and as the dish is a special one, we recommend testing the waters out once you have some pasta-making experience under your belt.
Delicious and memorable, we're sure you and your lucky dinner participants will love this dish!
Prepare the potato tortelli filling
Wash potatoes and cook in large pot of boiling salted water. Cook until potatoes are cooked through and can be pierced with a fork.
Remove from cooking water and pass through food mill, or mash with fork in medium mixing bowl. Allow to cook, adjust to taste with salt.
Once cooled, add zested lemon and extra-virgin olive oil to taste.
Prepare the handmade tortelli dough
In medium bowl, blend semola flour with eggs, and knead to reach smooth, soft consistency that holds shape when formed into ball.
Continue kneading dough with palm on floured working space. Keep kneading until dough is soft, elastic, and compact. Shape dough into ball, and cover with plastic wrap to maintain elasticity. Allow to rest at room temperature for at least 15 minutes.
Remove plastic wrap, and shape into a rectangle approximately the width of the pasta machine to be used. Begin rolling out dough using prepared pasta machine, generously dusting machine with semola to prevent dough from sticking to pasta machine.
Flatten dough through machine until desired thickness is reached, adjusting knobs to make dough thinner as it passes through machine.
Shape the potato tortelli and fill
Dust working space well with semola. Place pasta sheet on top of work space, and with round pasta cutter, cut out individual shapes, being sure to cut dough neatly to avoid creating waste.
With kitchen brush, gently place small amount of water on top of each shape. Place small teaspoon of filling slightly off-center on each pasta shape. Cover shape by lifting up larger side and cover filling entirely with this side of shape.
Using fingers, gently press each shape down around filling, eliminating all excess air. Press borders down firmly to seal. Join two points of each sealed pasta shape to create the tortello form.
Dust tray with semola flour, and place completed tortelli shapes on top.
Make the octopus and black olive sauce and finish dish
Clean octopus well and remove the inner stone in the center - if possible, have your fishmonger clean your octopus for you to save some prep time. Coarsely chop into cubes approximately 1cm wide.
Peel onion, and finely dice, then set aside. Finely dice parsley, set aside.
Place onion and parsely dice into cold sauce pot, then add a couple of tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil. Set pan over medium-low heat, and sauté vegetables until onion begins to turn translucent, and ingredients begin to leave an nice aroma. Time should be about 1 minute over medium-low heat.
Add chopped octopus to sauté pan with the vegetables, and stir well. Octopus at this point will begin to turn a pinkish color and will release its natural waters - this is exactly the right process for the cooking of the octopus.
Add white wine, allow to evaporate. Add olives and canned tomatoes, stir just a bit, and cover. Allow to simmer on low heat for approximately 1 hour, or until octopus is soft when tested with a fork.
When sauce is complete, taste and adjust accordingly with salt. You might find no additional salt is needed.
Cook tortelli in a large soup pot in salted water. Allow to boil for 2-3 minutes, drain and add to sauce pan sauce. Allow pasta and sauce to mix well together.
Place onto individual serving dishes, garnish with a drizzle of olive oil. Serve immediately.
70 minutes 9 ingredients 346 kCal
I'm an adventurous eater, and when traveling in Italy, had the chance to discover the amazing flavour of octopus. Not something I have the chance to enjoy every day, but this brings me back to the seaside restaurant on the Amalfi Coast where I first experienced these flavours. The original dish didn't have olives in it, but honestly, after making this variation, I think I'm going to stick with this modification since I adore olives in any shape or format.