- Seafood Spaghetti
- (Spaghetti Frutti di Mare)
For the Octopus:
2 pound cleaned frozen octopus, thawed and rinsed
2 cups water
1 Turkish or 1/2 California bay leaf
For the Tomato Sauce:
One (14 to 15-ounce) can whole tomatoes in juice, drained, reserving juice, and coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons chopped basil
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
For the Basil Puree:
3/4 cup packed basil leaves
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, softened
For the Seafood and Pasta:
1 pound spaghetti
6 garlic cloves
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound large shrimp in shell, peeled, leaving tail fan attached, and deveined
3/4 pound mussels, rinsed
3/4 pound baby squid, cleaned, bodies cut into 1/4-inch rounds, and tentacles left whole
Prepare the Octopus:
Place the octopus in a pressure cooker with water, bay leaf, and 1/2 teaspoon salt and seal pressure cooker with lid, then cook at high pressure according to manufacturer's instructions for 10 minutes.
Place the pressure cooker in sink (do not remove lid) and run cold water over lid until pressure goes down completely.
Transfer octopus to a cutting board, reserving 1/2 cup cooking liquid.
Cut off and discard head, then cut tentacles into 1-inch pieces.
Prepare the Tomato Sauce:
Simmer tomatoes with their juice, basil, and olive oil in a heavy medium saucepan over medium heat, uncovered, stirring and mashing tomatoes occasionally, until thick and reduced to about 3/4 cup, about 20 to 25 minutes.
Prepare the Basil Puree:
Puree basil, olive oil, butter, and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a blender, scraping down side as necessary, until smooth.
Transfer to a small bowl.
Prepare Pasta and Seafood:
Cook spaghetti in a pasta pot of boiling salted water (3 tablespoons salt for 6 quarts water) until 'al dente'.
Puree garlic and olive oil in cleaned blender until smooth.
Heat a dry 12-inch heavy skillet (not nonstick) over high heat until hot, 2-3 minutes.
Add oil mixture, then immediately add octopus, shrimp, and mussels and saute, stirring occasionally, until shrimp are browned on edges and mussels begin to open, 2 to 3 minutes.
Add tomato sauce and reserved octopus-cooking liquid and cook, stirring, until mussels just open wide and shrimp are just cooked through, about 2 minutes more (discard any unopened mussels).
Season with salt and pepper. Makes 6 servings.
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