This month´s #guestchefseries is brought by you by my wonderful and immensely talented DJ friend, Violeta. Vio is visiting from Berlin for a couple of days and next to bringing me my favourite German tea, she brought with her lots of good music and delicious recipe ideas. This #homemadeMonday I´ll tell you all about her coconut and curry udon soup. I feel it´s a great addition to the blog as my soups are usually quite basic and this one feels super exotic! And while I basically just watched her cook, while I was sipping on my wine, I can´t wait to try to make it myself and fill our house with the smell of coconut milk and curry!
I should perhaps start this #homemadeMonday recipe with a confession: I am one of those insane people that likes pineapple on my pizza. I mean, I don´t love it, but I don´t mind it either. What I do love though, is fruit in my salad. And while I rarely post salad articles on the blog, when I made this salad, I felt I really wanted to share it with you all. A little bit of unsolicited context for when I first made this salad: I was reading Marissa Peer´s book Perfect Weight Forever, and was working on bettering my food habits by not associating heavy comfort food with feeling better when I was down. I instead decided to stick to eating well and healthy when I was feeling sad and not try to fix these moments with fast food. So I made this salad and it was so delicious that I swore never again to order a way too greasy cheeseburger to stop me from crying. Here´s the super simple recipe:
Chestnut season is here and normally that would mean running up and down Lisbon streets chasing for the cart with the perfectly roasted dozen. But we´re in a pandemic, and that means 1. I´m staying at home much more and 2. I´m cooking much more. So I got my hands on 2kg of chestnuts – one kilo fresh and one kilo frozen, and set myself to find some Pinterest inspiration. And I can´t quite believe I am saying this – but Pinterest disappointed. The horror, right? There seem to be super few chestnuts recipe besides the traditional roasted ones out there. And so I chose to experiment for myself. There´s a breakfast hash recipe @mihai.gateste keeps making and I always thought those tastes go well together. I decided to keep the egg out, not peel, nor cut the potatoes, add the chestnuts and bake it exclusively. That´s how this chestnut and chorizo casserole got born. I find it the perfect blend of flavours, it´s super easy to make – needs minimal prep – and is great for a dinner party – *wink* *wink* to the friends who are invited for my Halloween party in two weeks. So keep on reading to read more about this autumn-y #homemadeMonday.
For Choice of Magic´s second chef series edition, I´m bringing you someone really special. Nonna has been my foster grandma for over two years and she is the single most remarkable woman I´ve ever met. Thins tiny 96 year old fairy grandmother lives in a castle, speaks six languages, has been a WWII spy and is one of my best friends. Every Sunday morning for the past two years Nonna and I have sat down in her room or her garden, having tea and speaking about everything. She´s taught me Renaissance art, I´ve taught her about escape rooms, and we have never run out of subjects. Recently I asked her about the dinner parties she used to throw in her youth (nowadays it´s mostly lunch parties) and I tried to imagine what they would look like in that palace. That´s when she gave me her secret beetroot starter recipe. It´s as simple as it gets, and yet I couldn´t find anything similar to it on the whole wide web. With her permission, I decided to share it with you for this #homemadeMonday.
This #homemadeMonday is an ultra special one as it kicks off a series of recipes from magical guest chefs. Because the food section of this blog seeks to bring you magical dishes, and not just recipes I took from Pinterest, I decided I´ll be inviting a friend/family member to cook us a a delicious dish once a month. This way you´ll get dishes and stories from people with different and fascinating backstories. And I get yummy food and fun dinner parties! Because to me, food is magic. And it´s not nearly half as fun if you cook and eat alone.
The first of its kind guest chef is my friend Ana Paula. I met Ana Paula while surfing on Portuguese beaches, and she became one of my dearest friends since. Ana is Mexican – which incidentally is also one of my favourite cuisines. She cooked these shrimp tacos for me while telling me stories of Mexican beaches and hot summer nights, and they were seriously some of the best things I´ve eaten in a while. It is not a recipe she connects to home cooking, but rather with days spent with friends on the magical Acapulco beach. And to be honest, that sounds simply dreamy to me, as the closest I´ve gotten to Acapulco is listening to this classic. Read on to make your own shrimp tacos!
This #homemadeMonday brings you a recipe inspired by one of my favourite Italian restaurants in town – a colourful and creamy risotto that will delight your senses and your Instagram feed. The gorgeous yellow colour is due to the saffron, and the creaminess is thanks to the cream cheese and butter. While it is a bit time consuming to make (you need to be next to the pot for pretty much the entire time you´re cooking it), it is perfect as both a main dish as well as a side dish next to a nice piece of steak or chicken breast. I chose to accompany it with octopus in the oven. Before giving you this ultra secret recipe, I just wanna say that this and my avocado risotto (recipe coming soon) are my favourite rice recipes out there and I´m super happy to share it with all of you.
You might not know this about me, but spicy food is my guilty pleasure. Except for that one time when I cried after tasting a Carolina Reaper sauce. I wish I could tell you that I did that not knowing that the Carolina Reaper is the spiciest chilli pepper in the world, but I did in fact know it. I just didn´t quite realise how spicy it would be. Just like I always underestimate how spicy the cayenne pepper in my dishes is. And so, these #homemadeMonday vegan tortillas ended up spicier than initially planned. If you´re not on a vegan diet, however, you can always add some Greek yogurt to them and calm your taste buds like that. But regardless of your food preferences, you absolutely need to try this simple recipe. So keep reading…
Access to fresh sea food is probably one of the main advantages of living in Portugal, especially if you learn how to cook it well or find yourself a partner that is a genius at cooking it for you. Which is pretty much what I did. And so, this #homemadeMonday is about tips and tricks for preparing and cooking octopus.
It´s a bit embarrassing that it´s taken me so many #homemadeMondays until I gave you one of my favourite recipes – André´s lasagna. It´s one of the first dishes he cooked for me and I loved it so much that I never even bothered to attempt my own, because his is just perfect. I´ve accustomed you with comfort food, I´ve showed you Italian ones before, but none like this. A lasagna that will never fail you, whether for a romantic dinner for two or a fabulous dinner party for ten. Here goes.
For those days when you feel like having a bucket of KFC crispy strips or hot wings, but you don´t want to deal with the guilt of having eaten fast food (yet again!) afterwards, this #homemadeMonday brings you a delicious recipe for crispy chicken with garlic sauce. It takes close to as long as a drive to your local KFC but I dare say is even more delicious and healthy! Perfect for a hungover weekend spent in your pjs or a friends movie night.