Octopus with saffron, black risotto and pickled dulse

  • medium
  • 4
  • 3 hours 30 minutes

Pickled red dulse, saffron emulsion and squid ink-stained rice contrast vividly with the pan-roasted octopus tentacles and sea vegetables in this striking seafood risotto recipe. Paul Welburn cooks the octopus in a water bath for three hours to prevent the flesh from tightening up and becoming rubbery, resulting in firm, succulent flesh bursting with natural juices.

First published in 2015
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Pickled red dulse

Saffron emulsion

Black rice

To plate

  • sea vegetables


  • Sous vide equipment
  • Blender


Begin by preparing the pickled dulse. Under running water re-hydrate the dulse for 15 minutes. Mix together the water, vinegar, salt, sugar and soy sauce in a pan and heat until dissolved, then remove from the eat and add the dulse to the pan. Leave to pickle for 24 hours.
Remove the tentacles of the octopus and discard the head. Trim the outer membrane from the tentacles and seal them in a vacuum bag. Cook at 80°C for 3 hours then chill in iced water. Once chilled remove the octopus from the bag, reserving the cooking liquid for the black rice, and set aside until required
Meanwhile, infuse the vinegar with the saffron for 1 hour for the saffron emulsion. Once the vinegar has infused add the vinegar and saffron to a blender along with the egg yolk, mustard and salt. Slowly drizzle in the oil until the mixture becomes thick and emulsified
Bring a pan of water to the boil and pour in the rice. Return to the boil and cook for 5 minutes, then drain and transfer to a tray in the fridge to chill. Once the rice has cooled, transfer it to a pan and heat it with a little of the reserved octopus stock, gradually adding more stock as it absorbs until the rice is cooked through. Add the lemon, squid ink, parmesan and butter to the pan and stir until fully incorporated
Heat a little oil in a frying pan until hot. Slice each octopus tentacle into 3 and roast in the frying pan until golden brown
  • oil
To serve, spoon the black rice onto the plate and top with the pieces of octopus. Dot the saffron emulsion around the plate and lay over the pickled dulse. To garnish, blanch the sea vegetables in boiling water for 30 seconds and sprinkle over the top
  • sea vegetables
First published in 2015

Paul Welburn has years of Michelin-star cooking behind him, holding a star for five years at restaurant W1.

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