We're all afraid of something, right?
Me, I'm ascared of Jell-O. Any kind of jiggling and gelatinous aspic-like substance makes me want to run right underneath the covers in my jammies. And I don't even own any jammies. My friend Richard, an eminent professor of psychology (and equestrian water sports enthusiast; don't ask), has long been disturbed by this fear of mine. But then he's afraid of being buried alive in a 50/50 wet blend of Rice Krispies and Count Choculas, and so who, I might ask, is the real head case here?
By the looks of the couple standing next to me in the fish market when I picked out this particular sea creature, octopus is to many what aspic is to me.
I feel sorry for these people, don't you?
You don't? Then you haven't tried my insalata di polpo (octopus salad).
Sometimes I grill it, but this time it was into the pot (filled with well-salted water and a bay leaf) for about an hour.
Let it cool before slicing the hell out of the poor (shrunken) thing.
Tossed with a good Sicilian olive oil, garlic, parsley and a little balsamic.
Almost as easy to make as Jell-O.
And not nearly as scary.