Some people confuse choco with squid, understandably as they look similar. Both have a white tube for a body and tentacles. But they’re quite different sea creatures. Sometimes choco isn’t identified accurately on English menu translations; it’s not always alone.
Choco, known also as sepia, is cuttlefish. It’s not the most attractive looking of things that can turn up on your plate in a traditional Canarian restaurant, but I quite like it. I’m a fan of most things with tentacles, including squid of all sizes and octopus.
Choco doesn’t really have a strong taste. A lot of people are turned off by the idea of it rather than the flavour and the fact that the texture can sometimes be on the rubbery side if it isn’t cooked properly.
Mostly on Tenerife choco comes a la plancha (grilled), sometimes helped by a bit of garlic. The tastiest chocos I’ve eaten have benefited from the addition of mojo verde (coriander sauce).
It’s also a very good value seafood dish in the Canary Islands, averaging around €6 for choco a la plancha with papas arrugadas and a customary nod at a salad.
In the end it’s one of those Canarian dishes that might look odd but is totally inoffensive.
The little choco in the picture was scoffed during a tapas route around Puerto de la Cruz.
Jack is co-owner, writer and photographer for BuzzTrips and the Real Tenerife series of travel websites as well as a contributor to lots of other places. Follow Jack on Google+
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