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Grandpa Lauro's Octopus Salad 

Posted on June 17 2022, By: Tanner Saraspe

Grandpa Lauro's Octopus Salad 

This is a very simple octopus salad that has become a staple at all of our family gatherings. It’s a pared down version of one they sell at our local Italian market. If you are starting with a fresh octopus, we recommend freezing it for at least two days before preparing this salad. Freezing beforehand helps to tenderize the meat. 

Ready in 2 hours Makes 4 servings 

  • Sea salt 
  • 1 medium-sized octopus (2-3 pounds)
  • 2 lemons 
  • 1½ cups chopped celery 
  • ⅓ cup chopped parsley 
  • 1 pinch dried oregano 
  • Black pepper 
  • 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar  
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil 

STEP 1 Set a large pot of salted water to boil. Rinse the thawed octopus in cold water. Slice the head portion off level with the tentacles. Discard head. Halve one lemon and set in the boiling water along with the tentacles. Make sure the water nearly covers the octopus. Reduce heat to a firm simmer and cook for 30-40 minutes or until the octopus is fork tender. 

STEP 2 Drain the octopus and rinse under cold water. Use your hands to scrub off the purple film that coats the tentacles. You do not need to remove it all; just whatever wants to come off. Transfer to a covered container and set in the refrigerator to cool completely. This should take about 20 minutes. 

STEP 3 Once chilled, slice the octopus into approximately ¼-inch chunks (or larger if you like). Set in a large bowl along with the celery and parsley. Toss together with the dried oregano, black pepper, ACV, olive oil, juice from half the remaining lemon, and salt to taste. Adjust seasoning to taste. Leave octopus to marinate for at least 40 minutes to one hour before serving. This recipe can be made ahead of time and will last up to three days in the fridge.