Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Forget mashed potato - this is my idea of comfort food...

This tired pregnant girl wants comfort food the African way. After all, I want our child to have adventurous taste in food so it's never too early to start right?

I picked up a couple of fresh octopus in our local supermarket last week and they've been waiting patiently in the freezer. In fact, this supermarket is a small one in pretty non- culturally diverse area so it was a pleasant surprise recently to discover that they sell one of our favourite ingredients. Two octopus cost me just over £4 so cheaper than chicken or steak.

I can't take the credit for the recipe though - this is one from my partner Issam, who's originally from Zanzibar, an Indian Ocean island off the coast of Tanzania, where octopus are abundant and a staple of the diet. Combined with coconut milk and a few other simple ingredients, cooked slowly until creamy and tender and served with rice and Swahilian Spinach it's simply pure comfort in a bowl. And once you've practised the preparation of the octopus a couple of times it's actually a pretty simple and fuss-free dish to prepare.

Sam took me through the prep step by step so I've included photos too. I hope you'll give it a try and enjoy it as much as we do. We hope in a few years to be introducing it to the next generation so maybe you'll try it on your kids too!

(See recipe pages for Zanzibar Octopus and Sam's Swahilian Spinach.)

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