Pulpo chancón

Pulpo Chancón


Share recipe

hide story show story

This dramatic and fun recipe cooks up a Saturday-night delight at Andina – it’s also a stunner for a dinner party. In Peru, chancón is a slang word meaning ‘studious’, but it also sounds like chancaca, the luscious syrup that you pour over the octopus in this dish – hence, we have the name ‘the studious octopus’.

  • Octopus

  • 1 octopus, small (preferably frozen and defrosted)
  • 1 tbsp of lime juice
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1/2 red onion, finely chopped
  • salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • Amarillo chilli paste

  • 1 tbsp of olive oil
  • 1/4 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 aji amarillo chillies, or 2 medium-heat red chillies and 1/2 a yellow pepper, deseeded and finely chopped
  • Butter bean purée

  • 1 tbsp of olive oil
  • 1/2 red onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tomato, finely chopped
  • 235g of butter beans, (1 tin, drained weight)
  • 70g of lucuma purée, or 1 heaped tbsp lucuma powder mixed with 50ml water
  • Chancaca syrup

  • 15g of panela, palm sugar, jaggery or light brown soft sugar
  • 1/4 limo chilli, or 1 medium heat red chilli, deseeded and chopped
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tbsp of orange juice, (freshly squeezed)
  • 3 black peppercorns
  • Salsa criolla

  • 1 red onion, halved and finely sliced
  • 1 tomato, halved and finely sliced
  • 1 tbsp of lime juice
  • 1 tbsp of olive oil
  • coriander leaves, finely chopped
To cook the octopus, place the lime juice, garlic and red onion in a large saucepan and add 3 litres of water. Bring to the boil over a high heat and add 1 teaspoon of salt. Use kitchen tongs to dip the octopus 3 times in the liquid, then submerge and release them into the water – the dipping will help the tentacles to curl up in a pleasing way
Reduce the heat to low, cover the pan and simmer the octopus for about 1 hour, or until tender. Remove, rinse and allow to cool
To make the amarillo chilli paste, heat the oil in a small frying pan over a low–medium heat. Fry the onion for 7–8 minutes until soft, but not browned, then add the garlic and chilli and fry for 2–3 minutes more to soften
Season with salt to taste, then allow to cool completely. When cool, blitz to a smooth paste, then set aside until needed. (You can store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week)
To make the butter bean purée, heat the olive oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat. Add the red onion and sauté for about 10 minutes until soft and translucent
Add the tomato and 2 tbsp of the chilli paste and cook for 2–3 minutes until the tomato has softened and collapsed into the sauce. Add the butter beans and lucuma and heat through. Season with salt and pepper, then transfer to a food processor or blender and blitz to a coarse purée
To make the chancaca syrup, put all the ingredients into a small saucepan with 10ml of water over a medium heat. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to low and simmer very gently until the sugar has dissolved and the liquid has reduced to a syrup consistency (about 10 minutes). Remove from the heat and strain the liquid into a bowl
Next make the salsa criolla by simply combining all the ingredients in a bowl and seasoning well with salt and pepper
Heat a griddle pan until it is too hot to hold your hand over. Cut up the octopus, leaving the tentacles whole, and the body cut to a similar thickness as the base of each tentacle
Griddle the octopus pieces for about 8 minutes, turning until crisp and richly brown all over
Divide the butter bean purée between 4 individual serving plates, then arrange equal portions of the octopus on top. Drizzle over some of the chancaca syrup and serve with the salsa criolla alongside
Share recipe