A month ago today I was in very rainy São Paulo, eating a gigantic mortadella sandwich (more about this below) and marvelling at this grey city, which has so much to offer. Let me set something straight though: São Paulo is not exactly what one would call a beautiful city. Its buildings stretch towards the sky, as if trying to make a connection to a God that might have forsaken the many poor of the city. Bursts of colour appear here and there, but especially when one thinks of the other iconic Brazilian city – Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo pales. What the city does have plenty of though, is an impressive art scene, mouth-watering food and great restaurants, and music – lots of music. For the scope of this article though, I´ll focus on seven fun things to do in this enormous and intimidating city of contrasts.
This Christmas season I wanted to bring a different Christmas dinner recipe for this international community, so I went for the Portuguese duck rice – a yummy dish of crispy rice and tender duck. Hubby and I did it for the very first time, and although it took us hours, I am quite proud of the outcome. These proportions are for a big meal of ten, but worry not if you´re a smaller group, it freezes quite well, so you can do that and enjoy it for the next couple of months. And I personally recommend you do just that, rather than cutting the ingredients, as this recipe takes about three hours to cook and if you´re gonna spend that much time on it, you might as well have duck rice for the full next year to show for it. 🙂
Coimbra, the former capital of Portugal in the 12th and 13th century, is nowadays the most notorious university city in Portugal and a perfect weekend destination if you find yourself either in Lisbon or Porto. The city has an intriguing and tragic love story behind it, that of Infante Pedro and Inês de Castro (a Spanish lady in waiting to Pedro´s wife, Constança). You see, Pedro and Inês were in love, so after Pedro´s wife died, they stopped hiding their love affair, a thing that enraged Pedro´s father, the king. He was so angry, that he had Inês killed, a thing that in return turned Pedro incredibly angry. One thing led to another, an uprising against the king started, and Inês´ killers basically ended up with their hearts ripped out, earning Pedro the name of “the Cruel”. Had Shakespeare known about Coimbra, Romeo and Julia would have been an entirely different story.
As you might have seen on my Instagram, I have now officially entered the cookie frenzy period. Five days into December, and I am on batch number three. The twist? I´m switching it up and started experimenting with new flavours. So for this #homemadeMonday, I´m bringing you this super easy coconut cookie recipe that thanks to its dash of orange, will fill your house with a Christmas smell. These cookies are much fluffier and less flat than my traditional Christmas cookies and as they do not take chocolate, they´re lower in calories. Not that anyone´s counting anyway.
This #homemadeMonday is for both the ones of you that don´t like tomato soup (and need a twist to the tangy tomato taste), and for the ones of you who love tomato soup (and want to try it in a different shape and form). I, for one, love the taste of tomatoes, but as I was trying to rescue some that were going bad in my fridge, I just felt that they alone would not make for a great soup. So I researched the topic a bit on Pinterest and got this idea to add white beans to the tomatoes. Long story short, I loved the result, I feel the beans were just what was missing to make the whole thing creamier and add a bit of starchy, buttery taste. And am here to share the whole thing with you.
What do you do when life gives you too many limes and too little cachaça? You improvise and upon a failed trial, you end up with these delicious key lime & blueberry Oreo cups. Needless to say, this looked very different in my head. I first tried to make a tart out of this, but left the base for too long in the freezer and by the time it started defrosting, the cream also started melting. So in a desperate attempt, I improvised. I blended some Oreos yet again, sprinkled them in a glass, and topped them with the rescued cream. They were de-lish! And they held marvellously for a couple of days in the fridge!
The Portuguese have this dish called “ervilhas com ovo escalfado” ergo peas with poached egg. But as we´ve established several times in the past, I am useless at poaching eggs. I thought to myself however that just like a shakshuka works just fine without poached eggs, so will my Portuguese peas. So I simplified the Portuguese recipe, switched it up a bit, and came up with this really nice brunch recipe for you to try next time you´re throwing a brunch party.
I guess some skeptics among you might have read the title of this article and thought this would be a pamphlet. After all, the British are not particularly well known for their exquisite cuisine. True, but a real foodie will always find some yummy dishes, no matter the damp and rainy country she ends up in. So be ready to be immersed into the food universe I experience during my short weekend stay in Edinurgh. Read about the food I loved, but also the ones that were meh and the places I wouldn´t necessarily try again.
Unlike pretty much every respectable food blogger out there, I have posted absolutely no recipe with pumpkins this entire fall. And to be completely honest, it´s because I´ve never been a big fan of eating pumpkin. I like carving it, decorating my house with it, but eating it – not so much. Well except in this new recipe I came up with recently. This one is a bomb. It´s essentially a threesome love affair between pumpkin, halloumi and sun-dried tomatoes, with a guest appearance of crushed walnuts, and of course spaghetti. Keep reading for the full thing.
Behold the first ever risotto recipe I ever tried (cooking). Yes, you read that right – my first ever risotto was an exotic green avocado risotto. I cannot for the life of me remember where I inspired myself from for this recipe, but I swear by it, have passed it on to various people and return to it again and again. Or at least whenever I have avocados in the house. There´s nothing fancy about the salmon other than a sweet chilli marinade, and the risotto is pretty standard except for the avo touch, so please don´t be discouraged by how exotic this sounds and just give it a try. Here´s the recipe.