Rod Dreher

Rod Dreher

World Cup final: Spain 1, Holland 0

posted by Rod Dreher

•1 lb octopus, either small or large
•4 T. olive oil
•4 cloves finely chopped garlic
•1 cup crushed tomatoes or peeled, chopped fresh tomatoes
•1 cup white wine
•2 T. honey or sugar
•2 T. chopped fresh dill
•4 T. chopped fresh parsley
•1 t. chile flakes
•2 T. capers (optional)
•Salt and pepper
Bring a large pot of salty water to a boil. Toss the octopus into the boiling water, return to a boil and cook for 1-2 minutes, then remove. Discard water.
Cut the octopus into large pieces and saute in olive oil over medium-high heat for 2-3 minutes. Add the chopped garlic and saute for another minute or two.

Add the wine and bring to a boil over high heat. Stir well and let it cook down for 3-4 minutes. Add the tomatoes and chile flakes and bring to a simmer.
Add about a teaspoon of salt and the honey or sugar. Mix well, cover the pot and simmer for 30 minutes.
At 30 minutes, add the capers if you are using them, plus half the dill and half the parsley. Check the octopus — sometimes small ones will be tender in just 30 minutes.{/p]
If they are still super-chewy, cover the pot again and simmer for up to another 45 minutes.
When you think you are about 10 minutes away from being done, uncover the pot and turn the heat up a little to cook down the sauce.
To serve, add the remaining dill and parsley and black pepper. Eat this with pasta or bread either hot or at room temperature.

Comments read comments(35)
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posted July 11, 2010 at 5:48 pm

surprised you didn’t find a paella dish

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Chuck Bloom

posted July 11, 2010 at 5:49 pm

Oh, the humanity! :-( Sadly, your jambalaya (need recipe, sir) looks like paella!
Captcha words (perfect segue) official slimiest

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posted July 11, 2010 at 5:55 pm

Clairvoyant cephalapod would be a terrible band name!
The best thing to do with octupi is to eat the really really tiny ones as a pizza topping along with mini calamari and starfish (Frutti Del Mar I believe it’s called.)

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posted July 11, 2010 at 6:09 pm

too funny Rod

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posted July 11, 2010 at 6:22 pm

For the full effect, serve with a heaped tablespoon of sour grapes. :-)

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Matushka Anna

posted July 11, 2010 at 6:29 pm

Oh, man! I just laughed myself into a headache! Too funny, Rod!

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Jan Hus

posted July 11, 2010 at 6:32 pm

The Dutch can be proud. Very few expected them to get to the final. They played well, especially the defense (which is surprising). They frustrated the Spanish in ways the Germans clearly could not. They had their chances, but it just didn’t go in the goal. It could have gone either way. Very fun to watch.

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Peter Hoh

posted July 11, 2010 at 6:38 pm

I got the enjoy the end of the game with a small, but partisan crowd at a local Mexican restaurant. Sorry, but there aren’t any Dutch dives in town.

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posted July 11, 2010 at 6:52 pm

(apols for cross-posting)
Good heavens, what an awful spectacle. Football/Soccer won’t be gaining any ground in the US with THAT as an advertisement! Twas a neutral’s worst nightmare.
Thanks be to the Great Gods of All Things Sport that Holland didn’t win. What with the awful officiating and the now-instinctive falling and clutching of shins, the very last thing football needs is youth development programmes emulating the horrible, cynical, negative, joy-killing darkness of the soul that the once-beautiful Dutch game has become. Spanish tiki-taka football, with its long stretches of possession and maddeningly patient probing, can be frustrating to watch at times, but at least it’s an attempt to play to the best of game’s potential.
Iniesta’s goal may have set off the mama y papa of all fiestas in Spain – oh to be in Barcelona or Madrid tonight! – but it dragged a sigh of relief from the rest of the football world bar Holland.
Let it be the start of a new era – ¡VIVA ESPAÑA! :-)

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posted July 11, 2010 at 6:53 pm

I love the Dutch football fans. I still have warm memories of partying with them in Orlando, FL in 1994. I came supporting Ireland (USA was still a nonstarter, competition-wise)and I was joined by Irish relatives. The courtesy of the Dutch fans, and the way they and the Irish interacted gracefully (this during the dying but not yet dead throes of hooliganism) made the whole experience a fond, fond memory.
However, Spain played the better game. And I was disappointed to see “The Beautiful Game” marred by so many thuggish yellow cards. Better than sudden death penalties, but still a disappointing World Cup final.

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Roland de Chanson

posted July 11, 2010 at 7:05 pm

This recipe is fatally flawed. The octopod does not suffer enough. I say dismember him alive then cook him on a low heat.
But Spain deserved to win. They dominated. Robben should have scored. Twice. You snooze, you loose. And as for the red (second yellow) to Heitinga that sealed the Dutch fate, well, de Jong should have received one for the savage kick to the chest of Alonso.
And where would this Spanish team be without Catalonia? Piqué, Puyol, Capdevila, Busquets, and Xavi. Pedro and Iniesta play for Barcelona. Villa is about to. Three more play for Valencia.
Entonces, viva España. I visca Catalunya lliure.

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Geoff G.

posted July 11, 2010 at 7:07 pm

I’m not a soccer/football fan and I didn’t have a horse in this race, but I will say that octopus dish sounds freaking fantastic.

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Rod Dreher

posted July 11, 2010 at 7:16 pm

As somebody who doesn’t watch or follow soccer, I have to agree with PolOC that the game wasn’t much of an advertisement for the sport. It was pretty dull, and it kept being stopped when grown men would fall on the ground and carry on like B movie actresses. I don’t know whether all those yellow cards were deserved or not, but one way or the other, they slowed the game down mightily. Anyway, from what this know-nothing could tell, Spain deserved to win because they dominated the game. Too bad for Holland. Congratulations, Spain! Look out, Pulpo.

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Your Name

posted July 11, 2010 at 7:18 pm

What’s the best accompaniment? Strozzapreti?

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posted July 11, 2010 at 7:21 pm

Spain wins with 100% indigenous Spaniards!
I do have to hand it to South Africa, they put on a good Cup.

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posted July 11, 2010 at 7:56 pm

I’ve eaten a lot of octupus- where I lived for a couple years in Africa was near the coast, and dried/salted octopus was a fairly cheap form of protein that could be easily preserved without refrigeration. It goes well cooked with some rice, peas, and a little garlic.
That being said, it’s not the sort of thing you would want to eat if you had better options- it’s extremely tough and rubbery.

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posted July 11, 2010 at 7:57 pm

It was pretty dull, and it kept being stopped when grown men would fall on the ground and carry on like B movie actresses.
A boring soccer game? It can’t be! And flopping and other examples of poor sportsmanship? This can’t happen, this is, after all, “The Beautiful Game”.

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posted July 11, 2010 at 8:08 pm

“it’s extremely tough and rubbery.”
not if you cook it right it’s not.
I lived in Japan–I’ve eaten a lot of octopus too. And I love it.

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posted July 11, 2010 at 8:58 pm

¡siempre, el pulpo se tiene la risa ultima!

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Jan Hus

posted July 11, 2010 at 10:03 pm

I disagree that the game was dull or that it was a poor advertisement for soccer in the US. Actually, I don’t care what sort of advertisement it was. The game was interesting in a similar sense that a 1-0 pitching duel in the World Series is interesting.
Imagine trying to sell baseball in Europe. You have to know what you’re seeing.
I was riveted.
In addition, the Dutch were most definitely not dominated. Until the red card, which reasonable men can disagree about, the game was even. It’s something that a tiny country like Holland can stymie powerhouses like Brazil, and for a while, Spain.
And…have any of you been struck in the shins, ankles, chest or elsewhere by an object (such as a spiked foot) traveling around 70 mph? Maybe the men were “flopping” because that sort of thing hurts.

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posted July 11, 2010 at 10:12 pm

cephalopods are extremely intelligent…

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posted July 11, 2010 at 10:27 pm

Fresh octopus may well not be rubbery. I was talking about the dried octopus that’s eaten in some coastal regions of Africa, however. It’s dried to the consistency of leather and is, indeed, very tough.

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Rawlins Gilliland

posted July 11, 2010 at 10:44 pm

I have a newly found dumped kitten I named ‘Rita’ who, despite being only 2 lbs, has her leg in a cast w/a broken leg. (My treat) So I placed her on the floor with a red ball and an orange one, several feet apart and told Rita to swat the ball of the team that was going to win & she immediately went to the red ball, and with her right leg stiff in the pink full leg cast, swung at it like a hockey vet. So who needs a German octopus? And PLEASE, no recipes for ‘kitten-cous cous ole’

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Rod Dreher

posted July 11, 2010 at 11:08 pm

No kidding, do you know what the odds are that the Octopus could have guessed correctly from two choices eight times out of eight? One in 256, or 0.0039 percent.
That’s pretty impressive. Dude’s gotta get to Vegas.

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posted July 12, 2010 at 4:01 am

I went to see a fight, but this soccer game kept breaking out …
Soccer 101 FAQ
Q: You are a man down, ten minutes left in extra time. Your opponents are younger and fitter than you. What do you do?
A: You pull everybody back into your own half, defend like crazy and trust to the penalties phase! You do NOT try to play like it’s businees as usual!

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Nick the Greek

posted July 12, 2010 at 6:41 am

Don’t cook the messenger, dude.

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posted July 12, 2010 at 7:01 am

For a Dalrymplian, not to mention American, you seem to have paid an awful lot of attention to (sniffs, and puts nose in air) an Association Football match.
PS: Are you by any chance of Dutch ancestry? I would have thought “Dreher” was German, but I suppose it could be Dutch.
PPS: You do know that octopi (octopodes??) are the most intelligent invertebrates? Mind you, in Japan they’re dismembered while alive, like one of the commenters advocates.

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Rod Dreher

posted July 12, 2010 at 7:45 am

I have zero interest in soccer, Rombald. Zero. Nor do I have Dutch ancestry. But I have a great fondness for the Netherlands, having visited friends there often back in the days before I had kids, and was able to afford travel there. For me, interest in the match was solely about wanting to see a team from a country I really like succeed — that, and wanting my friends, who really love soccer, to be happy. That’s it. It was fun to cheer for the Oranje, but again, my interest was entirely an expression of being pro-Holland, not pro-football.

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Dan O.

posted July 12, 2010 at 7:52 am

“I disagree that the game was dull or that it was a poor advertisement for soccer in the US. Actually, I don’t care what sort of advertisement it was. The game was interesting in a similar sense that a 1-0 pitching duel in the World Series is interesting.”
It most certainly was not like a 1-0 pitchers duel. It was much more similar to the recent Stanley Cup Final between the goon-it-up Flyers (also orange) and the puck-possession team, the Chicago Blackhawks.
The 1-0 score wasn’t the problem with the game, it was how it was played to the lowest common denominator when Spain determined the best way to fight back was to goon it up as much as the Dutch. Perhaps, strategically, they were correct.
“In addition, the Dutch were most definitely not dominated. Until the red card, which reasonable men can disagree about, the game was even. It’s something that a tiny country like Holland can stymie powerhouses like Brazil, and for a while, Spain.”
That red card reasonable people could disagree about. However, the Dutch should have been short since De Jong’s assault in the first half. The Dutch were very lucky they had the ability to play physical well into the second half.
The American trouble with soccer is the fact that a team with one or two elite-level players, some very good players, and a bunch of goons can make it so tight for a team like Spain

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posted July 12, 2010 at 10:05 am

Netherlands played dirty and in Spain the photo of the orange team was this karateka like soccer player De Jong kicking Xavi Alonso. The referee allowed dirty play to Netherlands, being their only strategy for winning the match. They deserved to lose. In Spain everybody is crazy about this octopus, they want him back, so we have now bulls and octopus as our favourite.

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posted July 12, 2010 at 12:15 pm

I like this fun side of you, Rod. Tehehehe….

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posted July 12, 2010 at 2:11 pm

I simply have to jump in here and claim my two cents. From where I sit the Netherlands were a hugely embarrassing bunch of thugs. Red cards should have been handed out all over the place to them. Either they were attempting to hurt someone or they were whining to get a foul. A terrible show and lets hope no one begins to imitate them. Just when the Aregentines clean up their dirty acting along comes the Netherlands to maintain the bad behavior. My wife and I thoroughly enjoyed seeing that punk Sniejder in tears on the side line. Did anyone notice the coach removing the medal from around his neck as he walked out after receiving it. Nice bunch.
Well Robyn can go home now and rest. He seemed to want to spend most of his time on the ground when playing with Brasil so maybe he was tired. What a flopper he was. And as for the Brasil game the only way they won was by shrewdly identifying they had either a moron for a ref or one bought off and they exploited him to the point of stopping all of Brasils forward momentum. And thank you Mello for finally giving Robyn what he had coming. There I feel better now and great job Spain and thanks for holding off against a bunch of punks.

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posted July 12, 2010 at 3:24 pm

NOOOOOOOOOO! Don’t eat Paul!!!

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posted July 12, 2010 at 8:53 pm

It’d be hilarious if folks started showing up at casinos with octupi.

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flv converter

posted July 18, 2010 at 12:24 pm

I have loved Xabi Alonso ever since his Liverpool days, and aren’t Xavi and Iniesta the tiniest midfield duo you have ever seen?

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