Spaghetti con Moscardini (Musky Octopus)

Small tentacles here, there and everywhere.  Because my son, Riccardo loves this pasta, I prepare it.  Because he eats with enthusiastic enjoyment, I prepare it.  Because Sofia copies him in eating it, I prepare it.  But because I don't like tentacles, I wish I was not preparing it.   Can you imagine my uneasiness in cleaning so many little octopuses?   But I am a mother so I will just shut up. 

Spaghetti con moscardini is usually cooked with tomato sauce (canned or bottled) but I had a lot of datterini tomatoes that I thought using fresh ones would be a pleasant change.  They are sweet & intensely-flavoured that I love cooking them or eating them raw.

In fairness to my little moscardini, I ate this pasta heartily even if I was picking the tentacles and passing them on to Riccardo's bowl.  Well, sometimes, a mother can be picky with her food too. 


Spaghetti con Moscardini (Musky Octopus)

Serves 4
  • 400 g. spaghetti
  • 500 g. moscardini (musky octopus), cleaned
  • 300 g. datterini, cherry, grape tomatoes (also canned or bottled tomato sauce), halved
  • parsley, chopped finely
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • salt & pepper
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 2 cloves garlic, halved or crushed
  • 1 chili, chopped

  1. Boil water in a cooking pot.  When it boils, add the salt.  Add the pasta and cook following the number of minutes stated in the box.
  2. In the meantime, sautè the garlic & chili in a saucepan with extra virgin olive oil.  When the garlic turn golden, discard.  Add the moscardini.
  3. Cook over medium-high flame for about 5 - 10 minutes.
  4. Add the tomatoes.  Cook for about 15 minutes.  
  5. Add the white wine.  Cook for another 15 minutes or until sauce is reduced & becomes thick.
  6. Add the cooked spaghetti (al dente) with the sauce and mix for about a couple of minutes.  
  7. Turn off the fire.  Sprinkle with parsley & drizzle with extra virgin olive oil.