Octopus and grilled ribs
If I have to decide what are the dishes more frequently prepared in the Galician restaurants, I would say octopus and grilled ribs, either pork or beef ribs.
There are many ways to prepare the octopus. It can be boiled and then be fried with mushrooms or shrimps. It can be grilled. You can add some cheese… it depends on the cook´s imagination.
However the more popular and tasteful way of cooking it, is by just boiling the octopus. The perfect saucepan is made of copper. It is served in a wooden plate.
When it is cooked you cut it into small slices , just taken from the saucepan, as it should be eaten hot. Then add some cooking salt and red pepper. Paprika can be added instead of red pepper
The octopus should be frozen before cooking it. Otherwise you have to beat it against a stone, seven times for each of the legs. It means fifty six times. You have to do it in order to tenderize the sinews that are in the legs . It can be more easily made just by frozen the octopus
Another typical dish is the grilled beef ribs, or even pork ribs. In Spanish we call it “churrasco”. Ribs are grilled with charcoal from the local woods. There is a type of sausage that is called Creole sausage that is commonly grilled along with the ribs.
There are many restaurants that serve these dishes in Santiago de Compostela. However if you have a car and you can move to the outskirts, you will find cheaper restaurants where the local people go.
In Lestedo for instance, at 10 km from Santiago, following the N-525 direction to Ourense, you have the restaurant FUENTES. They serve the best octopus in the area, and grilled ribs too. In fact they are the only dishes that they serve. In this restaurant they use a copper saucepan. They only open on Friday, Saturday and Sunday till lunch times. It is because the rest of the week they work in local street markets and celebrations.