How to Boil a Fresh Giant Pacific Octopus Arm (Boiled Octopus Sashimi Recipe | Mizudako)

We are preparing Mizudako, giant Pacific octopus from Hokkaido and boiling it as instructed without any rehearsal. This is my first time to boil giant Pacific octopus! Enjoy the boiled octopus as sashimi or carpaccio.

Boiled Octopus Sashimi (Mizudako from Hokkaido)

Course Seafood, Side Dish
Cuisine Japanese
Servings 1 arm (800g/1.76 lb per arm)
Cook Time 30 minutes Hanging octopus with s-shaped hook is not included in cook time.
Translator Get Francis Mug
  • 800 g Fresh Giant Pacific Octopus Arm sashimi-grade
  • 16 g Coarse Salt approx. 2% of the weight of the octopus
* 1 tablespoon (tbsp) = 15 ml, 1 teaspoon (tsp) = 5 ml
* The ingredients contain Amazon affiliate links.

Instructions

  1. This is an arm of a fresh sashimi-grade giant Pacific octopus. It was frozen so we let it sit to thaw in the fridge overnight.
  2. Now, rub the octopus with coarse salt for 7 minutes to remove any gooey film or dirt. The amount of salt should be about 2 percent of the weight of the octopus.
  3. The gooey substance have an unpleasant smell so make sure to remove it completely.
  4. This rubbing process takes a lot of work. Interestingly enough some locals use a laundry machine as a dedicated octopus cleaner. They say washing machines remove the gooey coating quickly and also tenderize the meat. Please do not try this at your local public laundry.
  5. The insides of the suckers or between the suckers are not clean so scrub them with a kitchen scrub brush.
  6. We recommend using natural coarse salt with minerals instead of refined table salt. Be sure to rub the octopus for about 7 minutes in total.
  7. When the salt-rubbing process is finished, rinse the octopus in a bowl with running water.
  8. Discard the water, and rub it thoroughly under running water again. Thoroughly rub the part where the gooey texture remains.
  9. Repeat the rinsing steps for a total of about 7 minutes, or about the same time you rubbed the octopus with salt. You will not be able to enjoy the octopus if it is too salty so be sure to remove the salt thoroughly at this stage. You can add salt to taste later.
  10. Now, the gooey texture has been removed thoroughly.
  11. Now, let's cook the octopus. Boil a generous amount of water in a large pot. Submerge the octopus into the boiling water and cook for about 5 minutes.
  12. When the water begins to boil again, cook for about 3 more minutes. The inside should be half-cooked so avoid overcooking it otherwise it becomes very tough.
  13. Now, submerge the octopus into ice water and let it sit to cool. Leaving it hot will make the octopus tough so cool it quickly.
  14. When cooled, pierce the thick part of the arm with the tip of an S-shaped hook, and hang it over the sink or bowl.
  15. The inside is not cooked completely so the arm will stretch and straighten from its own weight, making it easy to slice or cut.
  16. Now, the octopus has cooled. Let's slice it for sashimi. Cut the arm in half.
  17. The half-cooked inside should be translucent.
  18. Remove the protruding webbing or skins located along both sides of the arm.
  19. Trim off the cut diagonally.
  20. Then, slice the octopus as thinly as possible to enjoy the chewy texture.
  21. Dip the slice in wasabi soy sauce and enjoy the octopus. It is so juicy and has a chewy texture. So delicious!

Recipe Notes

The boiled octopus can be stored in the freezer but we recommend enjoying it as soon as possible.
Discard 5 cm at the tip of the arm, and use the thinner part in karaage or Takoyaki. You should also try our Takoyaki Octopus Tempura!
When you are in a hurry to thaw the frozen octopus, submerge it in a bowl with running water for about 15 minutes until softened.

This post was last modified on 10/21/2020

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  • I love octopus like that, thin sliced. I am going to try. What if I can only get frozen octopus?

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    • We used thawed frozen octopus that was fresh enough to be made into sashimi. For frozen octopus, please check with your fish dealer to see if it's safe to enjoy partially cooked octopus. Sometimes frozen octopus is sold only for cooking. Thank you for your question.🐙😊

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