For the court bouillon, bring water to a boil. Add onion, carrots, celery, garlic, orange zest, bay leaves, whole white pepper, coriander seeds, fennel seeds, thyme and basil, and simmer for 20 minutes. Salt heavily and add generous amounts of dry white wine and white wine vinegar to taste. Simmer for an additional 20 minutes and strain. (Can be made ahead of time and refrigerated.)
To prepare seafood salad, cut off the heads of the octopus and boil the octopus in salt water for 15 minutes to remove impurities. Strain and place in the pot of court bouillon and simmer until tender, about 1 1/2 hours. Remove from the spot and peel off the skin and trim ends. (The octopus is much easier to peel when it is hot). Cut the legs into small pieces on the bias and reserve in olive oil with some crushed garlic cloves and thyme. Cook shrimp in the court bouillon (approximately 1 minute, depending on size). Remove the shrimp and cool.
For the squid, wash very well and cut it into thin tubes. In a separate pot of boiling salted water, add the squid tubes. It is important to use a very large ratio of water to squid because when the squid is added to the pot, the heat is turned off to let the squid slowly cook until it is done. Be careful not to overcook the squid because it will become rubbery. Once cooked, shock the squid in ice water to stop the cooking process. Remove from the water and dry the squid.
Cook lobster in a separate pot of boiling salted water for approximately 8 minutes. Once cooked through, remove the lobster meat from the shell, and cut into pieces.
To assemble the dish, preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large pan, add all of the seafood ingredients, white beans, olives, tomatoes, lemon juice, lemon, salt and pepper to taste, and extra virgin olive oil. Heat in the oven until warmed through, about 10 minutes.
Recipe courtesy of Chef Scott Cutaneo – Le Petit Chateau