Cooking Octopus [Moved from Washington DC board]
This is a very Greek thing, so I would suggest you try a Greek restaurant; it's also VERY easy to make yourself--you just take an octopus, put a bit of olive oil on it, grill it, and then sprinkle with lemon juice and oregano.
No, you do not need to do either of those things. So long as you cook it quickly, it will be OK, especially if you find young octopus. If you buy a whole adult octopus, as I have done occasionally at Maine Avenue (to the disgust of the children of other shoppers), you can beat it against a rock if you happen to have a rock lying nearby, but it's not really necessary.