The Secret of Cooking Octopus

Forget everything you’ve heard about cooking octopus. Above all, forget the story about the cork in the cooking water. A pebble in the water would have the same effect: none.

The only thing you need, besides a fresh whole octopus, is:[restrict]

  • a pot of sufficient size
  • a suitable lid
  • a cooker
  • time
  • patience

Contrary to popular belief, an octopus does not require any stock, cork or other ingredients to become tender. The animal has so much moisture of its own that it can practically cook in its own juice. With spices such as laurel, ginger, garlic and peppercorns, the eight-armed food slowly cooks in its own juice.


  • Rinse the octopus under cold water
  • If you haven’t already done so, remove the bag
  • Cut off pouch between eyes and tentacles
  • Push out the biting tool
  • Put the spices in the pot
  • Place the octopus in the pot while it is dripping wet
  • lid on the pot
  • Heat slowly on 3/4 heat
  • As soon as steam appears, reduce the heat slightly
  • Cook below the boiling point until the octopus is tender
    Test: It must be possible to pierce the tentacles with a metal spike with little resistance
  • Remove and continue to use the stock, for example for a pasta sauce