Chefs at Home: Charred Green Curry Octopus with Black Rice
For the rice:
- 1 ½ cups black forbidden rice
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- 1 clove garlic, thinly sliced
- 2 ½ cups vegetable stock
For the curry:
- 1/2 teaspoon whole coriander seed
- 1 teaspoon whole cumin seed
- ½ teaspoon black peppercorns
- 3 small green chilies, seeds and stems removed
- 5 cloves garlic, peeled
- 2 stalks lemongrass, ends trimmed off and chopped coarsely
- 1 heaping tablespoon sliced and peeled fresh ginger
- 1 medium shallot, peeled and coarsely chopped
- 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 2 medium lime, zested and juiced
- 2-3 tablespoon grape seed oil
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- ½ can coconut milk
For the octopus:
- 2-3 octopus tentacles
- Olive oil
- Salt, to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Rinse rice thoroughly until water runs clear. Place in a sauce pot with sesame oil and garlic and toast the rice, stirring to coat, for 4 to 5 minutes. Add vegetable stock. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low heat, cover, and continue to cook for about 40 minutes.
If using whole coriander, cumin seeds and black peppercorns, add to a small skillet and toast over medium-low heat for 4-5 minutes, shaking and stirring occasionally, or until fragrant and slightly deeper in color. Cool the seeds, add them to a sandwich bag, and crush with a rolling pin or a heavy pan. Set aside.
Add toasted spices to a blender along with green chilies, garlic, lemongrass, ginger, shallot, turmeric, sea salt, lemon juice, lime zest + juice, sugar and coconut milk. Blend until a paste forms, scraping sides down as needed. Taste and adjust seasoning.
Heat a grill or grill pan to medium high heat. Dress octopus tentacles with a tablespoon of olive oil and ½ teaspoon salt and pepper. Grill tentacles until a small amount of char forms on one side, roughly 4 to 5 minutes. Flip and repeat on other side.
Fluff rice with a fork, add about 3 tablespoons of the curry sauce to the rice and stir to combine. Plate the rice. Place tentacles on top (I slice the lower/thicker part for easier eating). Top with some more curry, warm or cold, serve and enjoy.