Grilled Octopus with Tomato, Capers, Olives, Chick Peas and Arugula

The Feast of St. Lawrence begins in spectacular fashion on August 9th with an exclusive al fresco fine dining event for charity, called Dinner Under the Stars. The event will start with an oyster bar, charcuterie station and hors d’oeuvres, wine, beer and whisky bar reception at 6:00 p.m. During this time a performance by Steven Jones the Illusionist from Museum of Illusions will be taking place.

Dinner will be served at 7 p.m. and the event ends at 11:00 p.m. Two hundred and fifty guests will be seated at two continuous tables on Front Street and served a sumptuous 6-course dinner prepared by chefs from some of the top restaurants in the St. Lawrence Neighbourhood including Pearl Diver, Mangia e Bevi, Cantina Mercatto, Farmr, Hawthorne Food + Drink, Hot House, Batch, Cafe Nicole, Omni King Edward Hotel, Cirillo’s Academy, and George Brown College Culinary School. The Niagara vineyards in the Somewhereness group will serve delicious wine pairings with each course. CC Lounge will present a special whisky bar, and beer will be courtesy of Creemore Springs Brewery.

The 18- piece JAZZ.FM91 Youth Big Band will provide added ambiance in the beautifully illuminated Berczy Park. A portion of ticket sales will be donated to Second Harvest. To purchase tickets please visit –

Grilled Octopus with Tomato, Capers, Olives, Chick Peas and Arugula
Grilled Octopus with Tomato, Capers, Olives, Chick Peas and Arugula

In anticipation of the event, local Chef John Cirillo of Cirillo’s Culinary Academy sent us his recipe for Grilled Octopus with Tomato, Capers, Olives, Chick Peas and Arugula. Enjoy!

Grilled Octopus with Tomato, Capers, Olives, Chick Peas and Arugula


-2 to 3 lb whole Octopus, cleaned
-1/2 bunch parsley with stems
-3 cups Olive Oil
-1 whole garlic cut in half
-5 tablespoons butter
-1/3 cup cherry tomato cut in half
-1/3 cup capers
-1/3 cup olives slice
-1/2 bunch parsley chopped
-1/2 cup chickpeas
-1 tablespoon smoked paprika
-8 oz arugula
-2 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
-3 tablespoons olive oil
-salt and pepper to taste


1. Add 3 Cups of olive oil to a large pot, with 1/2 bunch of whole parsley and the garlic. Place Octopus in the pot, cover with a lid and cook for one hour at low heat until the octopus is tender. Remove and let cool. With a sharp knife remove the head and beak from the octopus and cut in half.

2. Sauté the Tomatoes, Olives, Capers until soft, add the chopped Parsley. Season with Salt and Pepper and mix well. Keep warm.

3. Place the Octopus into a bowl. Add the Paprika and drizzle with a little Olive Oil. Mix until the Octopus is coated. Grill the Octopus on high heat for 5 to 7 minutes and then remove from the grill.

4. Cut the octopus into 1 inch pieces. Place into a bowl with tomato mixture and chickpeas season with salt and pepper and mix well.

5. Toss the arugula with the balsamic, olive oil season with salt and pepper and mix. Place the arugula on to a platter with the octopus on top and serve.



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Editor-In-Chief at Toronto Guardian. Photographer and Writer for Toronto Guardian and Joel Levy Photography