We based this recipe on one given to us by Los Angeles home cook Ruth Honnegar (see Dinner With Friends). Ask your fishmonger for baby octopus; it's often sold cleaned and frozen in 1- to 2-pound packages.
- 1⁄2 cup white wine vinegar
- 1⁄2 cup fresh lemon juice
- 2 tbsp. kosher salt, plus more to taste
- 4 dried bay leaves
- 1 lb. cleaned fresh or frozen and thawed baby octopus, each cut into 5 pieces
- 1⁄2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more to taste
- 1 tsp. dried oregano, preferably Greek
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- Mixed salad greens, for serving
Bring vinegar, 3 tbsp. lemon juice, 2 tbsp. salt, bay leaves, and 6 cups water to a boil in a 4-qt. saucepan. Add octopus, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 30 minutes; drain octopus.
Transfer octopus to a large bowl and toss with remaining lemon juice, along with the oil, oregano, and garlic. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour and preferably overnight. To serve, put greens on a platter, top with octopus, and season with salt and pepper.