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What Does Octopus Taste Like – The True Chicken of the Sea?

What does octopus taste like? Well that depends on how it is made. Octopus is a well-loved food in many cultures. You may have sampled a bit yourself. Depending on your experience, you may have loved or hated it. When prepared properly, octopus is delightful. However, done wrong it can be a rubbery gross experience. Octopus is a lean, light protein. It can sate your appetite without making you feel overfull. It has iron, selenium, and vitamin B12.

What Does Octopus Taste Like?

You may be surprised to learn that octopus is pretty much flavorless. Some people say it reminds them of chicken. Others liken it to pork. These are people who have had the chance to eat octopus cooked right. In terms of texture, octopus should be more tender than even squid. That being said, remember that calamari is actually from a squid, not an octopus. The meat of octopus is much like lobster or crab when adequately cooked. 

Although it has a very light and mild flavor on its own, octopus has a great talent. It absorbs the flavors of what it is cooked with and imparts it to the consumer. Most often it is marinated for a period of time before cooking to ensure the best flavor. 

There are a number of ways to cook octopus. The tentacles can be grilled to produce a delicious barbecue dish. It can be simmered and added to a summer salad. It can be cooked in a seafood stock for a period of time to make soup. Octopus can even be the main ingredient in a delicious pastry turnover. Those are just a few of the ways to cook octopus. It can also be eaten raw.

What Does Octopus Taste Like Raw?

Raw octopus is most famously served in Japanese sushi restaurants. If you want to know what does octopus taste like raw, your best opportunity will be at this type of eatery. It takes an expert sushi chef to slice the meat thin enough to be appreciated as sushi or sashimi. When eaten, raw octopus is slightly sweet. The texture is a bit more firm than properly cooked octopus, but the thin cut meat helps reduce this sensation. It should be tender and easy to chew.

There are even people who eat raw octopus while it is still alive. As it has not been marinated or prepared in any way, it has very little taste. It may taste slightly of seawater due to being recently taken from the water. Of greater note is the texture. You can feel the little suction cups on your tongue and mouth as they are still active. If you want to avoid choking, you must chew your live octopus thoroughly. It is quite firm, much like the flavored gelatin dessert.

What Does Octopus Head Taste Like?

It may surprise you to learn that most of what has been covered so far is in reference to the legs or tentacles of an octopus. Even with a live octopus, it is the legs that are served immediately after cutting them off. This gives them the appearance that they are still alive. Perhaps now you are wondering about a few things. Can you eat the head of an octopus? If so, what does octopus head taste like?

Even though it is not commonly consumed, the head of an octopus is edible. There are some preparations that must be done first. If you can picture how an octopus is designed, think about where the internal organs are stored. They are within the head and body cavity, which are essentially the same thing. This must be cleaned out before consumption. The intestines are not to be eaten. The beak of an octopus must also be removed as it is hard and inedible. You certainly can eat the eyes, but they are often removed as well.

As with the tentacles, the head can be quite tasty. It may be slightly less tender than the legs but it should not be significantly different. With the appropriate treatment, octopus head tastes quite good. Octopus can even be served whole after being cleaned properly.

What Does Octopus Ink Taste Like?

As an octopus is a cephalopod, it has the ability to shoot ink from ink sacs. Largely used as a defense mechanism, the ink of an octopus is so dark that it is nearly black. At some point, someone decided to try eating cephalopod ink. Yet it is rarely octopus ink; most often, the ink of a squid is used. As with calamari, people usually get confused between octopus and squid. 

So what does octopus ink taste like? It is remarkably close to that of a squid. It has a salty, briny flavor that encompasses your mouth. The ink has absorbed the salt and seawater from around it to produce the ink. You may not want to know that it is made out of mucus and melanin, which makes it a rather bizarre food to eat. Squid ink is also used to color certain foods so they appear black. Although it is most commonly done to pasta, the culinary world delights in experimenting with it in this way.

Conclusion

Octopus can be prepared in a variety of ways. You can learn what does octopus taste like for yourself at the right restaurant. It can be eaten cooked or raw depending on your mood. If you are brave, you can try cooking it yourself. Just remember that technique makes all the difference when serving this excellent delicacy.

Check out my other post on Cornmeal fried fish and Fried fist taco recipe.

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