I wish I had eight arms

Finally, the three darkest months are finished. Also, three of the busiest months at university have come to an end – December was full of deadlines, January was full of exams, February was the month of realization that another semester had begun without me being able to even catch a break. I wish I had more than two hands during that period.

And now it is March, which means it is almost spring. Which means my hibernation is coming to an end. I have time to cook something that takes time. And I have time to catch daylight for food photography.

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We had some serious cold here in Belgium , originating from Russia. A true beast from the east. Although temperatures up to (or down to) minus 30 Celsius are not unfamiliar to me from living in Estonia, I thought I had escaped extreme cold by moving to Belgium. But because of people like Trump and other similar irresponsible scum, such severe fluctuations in temperature are becoming the new reality.

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Onto happier things – this morning we had 7 degrees and sun.  I had time to go to the market. And I wanted food that would reflect the first warmth of spring. I saw octopus and I didn’t look any further. I found my eight arms. I cooked the octopus in barely simmering vegetable stock for about 1.5 hours & let it cool. During that time I made a simple salad of chopped tomato, cucumber, red onion, roasted & fresh bell pepper. Added black olives, capers, and chopped parsley and coriander. Some rocket salad and lots of olive oil and lemon juice. I then griddled the tentacles on very high heat for about one minute and afterwards used blowtorch to add smokiness. It was exactly what I wanted.

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With the second part of tentacles I had to go the classic Spanish way – pulpo a la Gallega.

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Just pimenton de la vera (smoked paprika, use a quality one), lemon juice, Maldon salt and very good fruity olive oil. Although a Spanish classic, I used Croatian olive oil which has exceptional depth of taste and what I can truly recommend for other olive oil connoisseurs:

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And the spring is here again. Both in the air and on the plate.

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