Warm Octopus and Sweet Onion Salad with Fresh Sage and Lemon Vinaigrette

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  • Total: 1 hr 50 min
  • Prep: 10 min
  • Cook: 1 hr 40 min
  • Yield: 4 servings
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Lemon-Sage Vinaigrette:

3 cups fresh lemon juice

1 shallot, coarsely chopped

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1 tablespoon honey

1 cup olive oil

Salt and freshly ground pepper

3 sage leaves, chiffonade

Sweet Onion Salad:

2 tablespoons olive oil

1/4 cup sugar

2 sweet onions, finely sliced

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

Salt and freshly ground pepper


2 pounds octopus, cleaned

3 cups water

2 tablespoons aged sherry vinegar

4 wine corks

2 cloves garlic, smashed

1 bay leaf

1 tablespoon black peppercorns

1/4 cup olive oil

Salt and freshly ground pepper

Chopped fresh sage and parsley, for garnish


  1. Lemon-Sage Vinaigrette: Place lemon juice, shallot, garlic and honey in a medium saucepan and reduce to 1/2 cup. Place reduced syrup into a blender, add olive oil, salt and pepper and blend until smooth. Pour into a bowl and fold into the sage.
  2. Sweet Onion Salad: Heat olive oil in a large saute pan with sugar over medium heat. Add the onions and cook until soft and caramelized. Add the vinegar and cook until reduced. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Octopus: Place the octopus, water, vinegar, corks, garlic, bay leaf and peppercorns in a medium saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat and cook until tender, about 1 1/2 hrs. Remove the octopus from the water and place on a platter lined with paper towels. Heat the grill or grill pan. Cut the octopus into pieces, brush with olive oil, season with salt and pepper and grill for 1 to 2 minutes on each side.
  4. Assembly: Place the octopus on a platter, drizzle with the vinaigrette, top with the onion slices and sprinkle with the fresh herbs.