Panino al polpo fritto
by: Lucio Mele
Lucio Mele, Pugliese from Manfredonia, class of 1980, moved to Bologna and learned from great masters such as Alfonso Iaccarino. He worked in a seafood osteria in Bologna and later, with a passion for the mostsimple of ingredients founded the "Pescaria" project. This fish bar the chef – who in the meantime also found a way to triumph in the Chinese Masterchef course with Maria Cicorella and Nicola Savino – studies the best panino combinations and proposes a new one each day.
Fried octopus panino, chicory, garlic, oil, cooked fermented figs, ricotta, pepper, oil and anchovies.
This panino breaks the status quo with the Pugliese octopus panino, frying rather than roasting the octopus. We substituted the classic onion and caper dressing with a creamy ricotta that embraces each bite of fried octopus. The flavoursome salt and the sweet fermented, cooked fig allows each bite to be an explosion of taste.
The octopus panino represents the evolution of a great Pugliese classic, with the challenging intent of making the panino tasty and pleasant to the palate with friend fish. In this panino, the octopus and chicory are harmoniously combined with the anchovies and ricotta as well as the precious figs: a sweet combination that balances the palate after the octopus along with the delicate nature of the ricotta mixed with lemon.
This panino is an authentic tribute to the marine or sea culture of the Pugliese Panino: each ingredient is territorially connected to Puglia and its traditions. An identity that is universal in its connection to the senses, however with specifically Pugliese nuance.