Life inside the snow globe is pretty but it’s February and I’m tired of feeling (and looking) like a nesting doll. It’s the final day of Carnival in Rio and I’m not there. It’s hard to believe that there are people thinking, not about how many layers they can wear under their overcoat, but how many feathers they can get on their headdress – a headdress and little else. I looked for coverage of the parades that have been going since Saturday but haven’t found very much. While I hate to miss out, I love knowing that there are still events so wonderful, people don’t stop to upload. Hoping to bring a little bit of carnival to my site, I asked a Brazilian friend for any good recipes made for the festival. Her answer was immediate and simple – caipirinhas – the fuel behind the celebration and apparently, the unusually high November birth rate in Brazil. As she put it, it is a country of Scorpios.
A combination of limes, sugar, and cachaça, the Brazilian liquor made from fermented sugar cane, you can also use vodka to make a caipiroskas or light rum for a caipiríssima. I briefly considered holding my glass out the window for a caipisnowcone. However, you mix it, it’s worth the Fat Tuesday effort lest you wake up on Ash Wednesday all repentance and no sin. Read more
I’d been looking for a way to use chirimoyas since I came across them a few months ago in a nearby market. Originally found in the Andean region between Peru and Ecuador, they’re also cultivated in small pockets throughout Chile, California, Spain, New Zealand, Australia, and Israel. Heart-shaped and scaly, they could be a dragon’s paw and are almost as rare in my Brooklyn neighborhood, so I was excited when I found them. Also known as custard apples, they’re like everything and like nothing else. The fruit can be likened to strawberry, banana, pineapple, papaya, avocados, mango, ripe pears, and commercial bubble gum while Mark Twain described it more simply as “deliciousness itself.” Read more
Though I’d love to have homemade rolls every day, I stay away from bread recipes for first thing. They never seem to rise and bulk up in the time promised. I wake up early and spend the morning nervously peeking at the dough I lovingly covered in its blanky and placed in a draft free place to no avail. One hour becomes two and there’s no breakfast in sight. By the time it’s done, I’m too cranky to really enjoy it. I didn’t get to sleep in yet the dough enjoyed a leisurely rise. When I came across pan de yuca or yuca bread in a Miami, I was curious. A combination of yuca flour (also known as tapioca starch) and cheese, it can be mixed and rolled as quickly as arepas then baked off. Read more
I’ve been going through this week’s New York Times travel section featuring Latin America, specifically an awakened Chile, colonial Colombia, 36 Hours in Montevideo, Rio hot spots, Peruvian restaurants, and rejuvenated Mazatlán. Travel exhausts me but its a fun read.
I’ve resisted the temptation to repost until now, but with the excitement of Friday’s Olympic announcement I wanted to link to my favorite Carioca. I can’t wait till 2016! Click here for the complete post.
With the constant threat of rain, I did my usual food shopping this weekend under a white sky. Along with the usual Mccann’s oatmeal, baby spinach, and salmon, I’m constantly running out for more peppers, plantains, and vino seco since starting this blog, loving the colors they add. Walking through the gray today on a search for coconuts (more on that later), I couldn’t help but feel happy despite the rain. I’d wanted to post this version of Aquarela do Brasil for a few weeks and today seemed like the perfect day, even more so when I read the composer, Ary Barroso, wrote it during a thunderstorm.
Escaping from a sudden afternoon downpour this week, I found the SAS World-Wide Restaurant Cookbook at the Atlantic Book Shop. Published in 1960 and sponsored by Scandinavian Airline Systems, journalist Charlotte Adams visited 36 countries in search of the best restaurants and their favorite recipes. I haven’t had a chance to try any of the recipes just yet, but I’m already in love with her descriptions where she’s quick to point out where to go continental and where to go native. Speaking Read more