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Pulpo fiction? Shall we eat octopus?

Donkey Riding Melide, Spain
Written by Kirstie Pelling

Pulpo fiction? Shall we eat octopus?

Kirstie Profile SmallMelide attracts octopus lovers. No, not the kind that stroke them; the kind that eat them. Some call it the octopus capital of Spain. So arriving in Melide on our journey to Santiago it seemed appropriate that we should try to eat octopus. Or at least try to try. 

Octopus cafe

Three steel bins formed a line at the front of the café. One was filled with cold water and purplish pink flesh. The next was bubbling away like a cauldron, steam rising into the assembled crowd of onlookers. The third sat next to an empty wooden table where a thin man in a white apron hooked a floppy rubbery mass out, and slapped it onto the bench.

Purple bobbled skin

In one deft move he cut out a pink veined blob and threw it on the floor beside us. He then started slicing through purple bobbled skin into clean white flesh. He arranged twenty of the slices onto a simple white plate and handed it to one of the crowd. Everyone shuffled up a place in the queue. by Xosé Castro

Galician Octopus  by Xosé Castro


“Yuk,” said Matthew, screwing up his face.

“Do you want to try some pulpo?” his Dad asked.

“No I don’t” he replied.

“My like octopus?” his sister enquired.

“No, you don’t,” Matthew replied firmly, “can we go for pizza now Dad?”

“Sure, he replied, “but they only do octopus pizza here. This is Melida, the octopus town of Spain. It’s pulpo or nothing.”

I’ll just have an ice cream,” said his brother, as we returned to the street filled with endless pulperia restaurants.

“Ice creams all round then,” I confirmed. “All with pulpo topping?”

Party night in Melide, Spain

Turns out the night we arrive is party night in Melide.

About the author

Kirstie Pelling

Kirstie is the Editor of The Family Adventure Project. A professional writer and poet, she's the creative and journalistic force behind many of the stories and features published here. She's a co-founder and co-director of The Family Adventure Project and also works as the #poetinmotion producing and performing poetry for print, video and live performance.

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