Saturday, March 16, 2013

Papaya cream with Creme de Cassis

Some years ago this dessert was on fashion in Brazil, most of the nice restaurants started to offer it. Now you can still eat it in the "Churrascarias", the Brazilian-style steak houses that you also find in other countries. Of course, with Brazilian papaya the dish is even better...


1 ripe papaya
1 scoop vanilla ice cream 
1 tbs Creme de Cassis (can be substituted for a non-alcoholic syrup)


Peel papaya and remove seeds. Cut in small pieces. Blend with the ice-cream until smooth. Pour into dessert bowls. Add Creme de Cassis over the cream and serve.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Halloween Spider Truffles

I am planning this year's halloween party food and decided to share my usual halloween potluck dish here: Brazilian chocolate truffles (brigadeiro), dressed like spiders. The recipe is easy. I have already posted it here. You only need to add the following ingredients:

1 tube of black ready-to-use icing (you can buy the Wilton brand here)
1 bag of candy buttons (you can buy them here)
black candy sprinkles


Follow the recipe as described here.

Then decorate:

Roll the truffles in the black sprinkles. Put them in the candy cups. Arrange the truffles in a dish before starting the rest of the decoration.
Add a little drop of the icing on the flat side of a candy button. "Glue" the candy button on a truffle. This is one "eye". Repeat this process until you have all the truffles with 2 "eyes".
Then carefully add a round drop of the icing on each eye.
Finally, spread some icing on the truffles, creating the legs.

Grilled Cauliflower in Curry

I had this idea the other day, based on some cauliflower salad that I buy sometimes from Whole Foods (I believe their cauliflower salad contains also some garlic and almond flakes). It was simple and easy to make, and my son loved it. I served it with barbecue steak, brazilian style (the only spice in the meat was coarse salt).


1 whole cauliflower
1 tbs curry powder
3 tbs olive oil


Cut the cauliflower in florets. Discard the leaves.
Mix the curry powder, salt and olive oil in a large bowl. Add the cauliflower florets and mix well, so that the florets get all covered with the curry paste. Let it rest in the refrigerator for 1 hour.
Grill the cauliflower, turning once, for a a few minutes (around 10 minutes) until they are softer and lightly darkened.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Easy Creme Brûlée

I made this recipe the other day to my "craving gourmet son". Sometimes he feels like eating some difficult to find things (unless I make them!). So after a week of begging I had him help me bake it. This is a French dessert. It's also a Spanish dish, it's called "catalan cream" in that country. Brûlée means "burned", because the sprinkled sugar on top is burned. You can use a cook's torch to burn the sugar. I don't know the other way, using some metallic utensil.


3 egg yolks
100 ml (3 oz.) milk
1 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 tablespoon sugar to sprinkle


Preheat oven to 250 oF.
Mix the egg yolks, milk, cream, sugar and vanilla. Pour in porcelain ramekins (or other oven-safe cup). Place the ramekins with the cream in a rectangular cake pan and bake for 35 to 40 minutes.
Once out of the oven, sprinkle the remaining sugar over each ramekin with the cream. Using the kitchen torch, burn the sugar until it turns golden. Let them cool for a while, or take them to the fridge for a couple of hours before serving. Note that if the creme brûlée is in the fridge for too long, the burned sugar is no longer crunchy.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Easy coconut and parmesan cupcakes (queijadinha)

This is a very easy recipe from Brazil. My grandma made a lot when we went to her house as kids.
I made the queijadinhas (pronounced "kay-ji-dee-nia") for Thanksgiving this year.


4 eggs
1 can sweetened condensed milk
2 cups grated coconut
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup coconut milk


Preheat oven to 390 °F.
Place all ingredients in the order listed above in the blender and turn it on.
Pour the mixture into a cupcake baking sheet lined with paper cupcake cups.
Bake for about 40 minutes or until it starts to brown on top.

If you want to enhance the cheese flavor in the queijadinha, add more parmesan.
For less dry cakes, bake them in water bath (putting the cupcake sheet inside a rectangular baking sheet containing hot water). But it is a lot more work, you have to be careful not to "bathe" the cakes in the hot water when you remove them from the oven (it happened to me).

Monday, May 2, 2011

Baked Fish Tagine with Chermoula sauce

One more delicious recipe from the Moroccan cooking workshop promoted by Creative Cultural Weavers. I can't wait to make it at home. Enjoy.

Chermoula/Tchermila is a sauce you can use with any white fish, cooked in the grill, boiled or in the oven. You can keep it several days in your fridge.


For 1 kg/2lb  of cod or halibut, cut in pieces of 4"/10cm you will need:

1 bunch of coriander
1 bunch of parsley
5 cloves of garlic
1 tablespoon cumin
1 tablespoon hot or mild pepper
1 cup olive oil
1/2 cup red wine vinegar

Potatoes cut into half
Bay leaves
Cherry tomatoes
Bell peppers

Blend coriander, parsley and garlic in a food processor. Then add the cumin, pepper, olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt and blend everything. Heat it (but do not boil).

Preheat the oven to 430F.

In a large pan, put onions, carrots, potatoes, bay leaves with half of the mixed spices (Chermoula/Tchermila) and cover with water. Cook for 20 min.
Optional: you can  add olives .

Generously coat the fish fillets with the remaining Chermoula and let it rest on a plate.

Pour the cooked vegetables into a big baking dish with a little bit of the broth. Lay the fish over the vegetables.

Top the fish with cherry tomatoes, bell pepper slices  and lemon slices.

Bake it for 20min.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Zaallouk (Eggplant appetizer)

I went to a Moroccan cooking workshop organized by CCW, Creative Cultural Weavers, our cultural group. Thank you, girls, for the organization and for the recipes. I am copying the first one here, together with my photo of the dish.


2 eggplants
1 can of crushed tomatoes
2 cloves of garlic
1 onion
olive oil


Preheat the oven to 450F.
Wrap the eggplants with aluminum foil and bake for 40 min to 1 hour.
Put olive oil, garlic, onion in a pan.
Cook on medium heat. Pour the tomatoes, basil, salt and keep cooking for 10 min.
Once the eggplants are baked, cut them in half, scoop the inside, discarding the skin, and add to the tomato sauce.
With a hand mixer, roughly blend the mixture.
You can serve the Zaallouk over grilled slices of ciabatta.