I´ve been thinking long and hard about what to call this recipe. You see, originally we started cooking mussels a la Vila Franca do Campo – aka the Açorean way. But as time went by, we kept tweaking the recipe and the current state of it is a bit far from its origins in method, albeit just as, or dare I say even more? – delicious. So I´m gonna call it “our special mussel recipe”, and proceed to sharing our secrets for this #homemadeMonday on what has become after your votes – #seafoodapril.
Every time we buy an octopus to cook, it feels like we´re going to feast on it for a full week. And while I had no problem with eating french fries every day for a month when I was little, nowadays I get a bit bored of repeating a meal too many days in a row. So I kept some tentacles from last week´s octopus and instead of reheating them, I repurposed them for a typical Portuguese octopus salad. The octopus salad is possibly one of my favourite ways of eating octopus as it is fresh and a perfect blend of flavours drowned in olive oil. I used octopus that we had boiled and even cooked in the oven previously, so please keep that in mind if you trey to reproduce this week´s #homemadeMonday. Also, considering this is an appetiser, the picture here has about two portions of the salad in it so keep that in mind when planning.
I remember the first bite André took out of the first couscous salad I ever made. I looked at him longing, and asked nervously: “So, do you like it? Shall I do it again?”. André took another bite and timidly said “Yeah… I mean you can keep doing these healthy dishes and I´ll do the ones we actually love, like fajitas and stuff”. I´m laughing now, but I was pretty upset then. And yet, I repeated the couscous and it rapidly became André´s favourite dish of mine. Growing confident, one day I thought I´d use the bulgur wheat tabouleh we´ve had in our drawer for a year and make a dish out of it. I looked for some inspiration online, and decided upon a tabouleh with chickpeas, cucumber, feta cheese and mint. I altered the recipe, as I usually do, and what came out was a delicious mediterranean-like salad that André actually liked, had it not been for the za´atar, a spice he doesn´t fancy as it turns out. So for this #homemadeMonday, I present to you a great recipe for when you want a light dish to detox after the winter holidays, or one to take to the beach with you on hot summer days.
For the first few years of having had shakshukas, I had not the slightest intention in changing anything about this most perfect dish. That is, until I once found myself with some leek in the fridge and had no clue what to do with it. A spark of inspiration made me wonder if I couldn´t turn it into – why not? – “a shakshuka”. A green one, to be precise. So I threw in some baby spinach, a bit too much smoked paprika and came up with my first semi-green shakshuka (the smoked paprika made it kind of brownish instead). I tested and tried the recipe a couple of times, so that I could bring it to you this #homemadeMonday in all its green glory.
I know what you must be thinking – not another banana bread, hasn´t this pandemic had enough of them? I realise I´m a bit late to the game and you might not want to read yet another banana bread recipe, but I absolutely swear by my friend Hollie´s being the best one you´ll every try. Even Nonna, my adoptive grandma, who does not like bananas at all, absolutely loved it. It has just the right intensity of banana flavour and the perfect degree of softness and moisture. So let this #guestchefseries guide you through the perfect banana bread recipe.
I suspect curry is one of my top 10 favourite dishes. And while I´ve never actually followed an official recipe, I believe I make a pretty mean one. You´ll quite possibly identify some missing or extra ingredients, but I personally love the taste and find my way to be the easiest way to make a delicious curry with pretty much anything you have at hand. This time, I had some cauliflower, shiitake mushrooms and a zucchini. Add to that a can of chickpeas that I always have in the house, some dehydrated figs and cashews and you´ve got yourself a kick-ass curry. But really, the point is you can put anything you like in there – sweet potatoes, carrots, spinach, let your imagination run wild. So keep reading through this #homemadeMonday and let it inspire you to improvise your own curry.