Wood-Grilled Octopus and Local Shrimp Skewers with Rosebank Farm’s Baby Potatoes, Silver Queen Corn, Yellow Tomato Fondue, and Octo Gastrique
Yields 4 appetizer servings
from Chef Nathan Thurston of Stars Rooftop and Grill, Charleston, SC
For the Octopus
4 ounces extra virgin olive oil
12 leaves parsley
3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
Peel from 1 lemon, chopped
1-2 pounds octopus*, local when available
Braising liquid from cooked octopus (see step 2 in recipe)
1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar
ask your local fishmonger to thoroughly wash and clean octopus.
For the Skewers
8 large local shrimp, heads on, bodies peeled, deveined
8 prepared octopus leg portions, cut into 2-inch pieces
2 wood skewers (8-inch), soaked overnight in water
Fine sea salt
For the Yellow Tomato Fondue
1 yellow tomato, rough chopped
1 teaspoon white balsamic vinegar
½ teaspoon sugar
2 ounces extra virgin olive oil
For the Roasted Potatoes and Corn
1 pound mixed baby potatoes, roasted
2 ears silver queen corn, roasted and shaved
Extra virgin olive oil, as needed
Fine sea salt
Heat oil in a thick-bottom Dutch oven or rondeau. When oil is very hot, quickly fry parsley, garlic, and lemon peel. When garlic starts to brown, immediately add octopus, carefully rolling all sides in hot oil. Place a small plate on top of octopus (to keep it from floating) and cover the pot. Octopus will immediately start releasing liquid—enough to braise the octopus in. Braise until fork tender (1½-2 hours). Chill for several hours before serving. Portion into 2-inch pieces to serve.
To create “octo gastrique,” strain the braising liquid from cooked octopus. Add sugar and vinegar. Simmer this mixture, reducing until sauce coats the back of a spoon. Set aside.
For yellow tomato fondue, purée all ingredients except olive oil in a blender until smooth. With motor running, drizzle in oil. Adjust seasoning with salt. Reserve until needed.
Alternate four shrimp and four octopus portions on each skewer. Prepare grill and grill skewers on the hottest part of grill until lightly charred on both sides.
Select a plate to complement the bright colors of the dish. Place a couple ounces of tomato fondue on plate and top with roasted potatoes and shaved corn. Place grilled skewers on top. Finally, drizzle with octo gastrique and enjoy.