APRON MOMENT

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12 / 21/ 2015

CHRISTMAS CELEBRATION, LOTS OF EMOTIONS!

Definitely, the best memories from my childhood were the Christmas parties with cousins, aunts and uncles who came from Londrina-PR and Campo Grande-MS to my city Campinas-SP. My mum’s house has always been the place for every celebration! The preparations for the Christmas dishes usually start after lunchtime on Christmas Eve. When the women occupied the kitchen space and chopped all ingredients! Then, at the end of the afternoon, the Chester was already baking into the oven over low heat. This means that the house was filled with an appetizing aroma of the Chester being roasted! In the middle of the Christmas celebration when the guests and families were already present, I remember that some guys “with an exotic power” and, with just a simple look or a brief “testimony” of their “victim” could analyze our aura, for a positive or a negative aspect. Instantly, they did a “job” to improve and open our life. Lots of emotions! Or yet, I remember someone mentioned being vegan, but if we paid attention to his plate, it was possible to see a slice of Chester that was camouflaged among the farofa and the rice...(hahaha!) Lots of emotions! To me, Christmas means salpicão, Chester and farofa. For those who don’t know salpicão, it’s a mix of shredded chicken with many ingredients such as walnuts, dried plums, olives, peppers, pieces of apple and mayo. Its taste is delicious! This salpicão recipe has been in the family for a long time and it comes from the city of São João da Boa Vista-SP; the mother of our great friend, who belongs to the Vaz de Lima family, gave the recipe to my mum.  The farofa recipe I saw in Cláudia’s recipe book, called “O grande livro de receitas da Cláudia”, is a mixture of flour and many other different ingredients and it is really appreciated by Brazilians. The collection of recipes in this book is fantastic and, I frequently spend time looking for a spark inspiration! It has been a long time since this salpicão was a traditional dish in our Christmas. So, I really appreciate and thank our dear friends Theresa Lima and her daughters Cecília and Izaura for giving this family recipe to us. Unfortunately, there are some people that are completely jealous and hide their recipes! I’m sure that Theresa and her daughter Cecília are laughing and looking at everyone from a better place and they know the secret of the other side! A toast for the Vaz de Lima family!

 

SALPICÃO    

 

                 Total time: 1 hour  30 minutes                         Serves: 13-15 people

 

Ingredients:

- 2 chicken breasts (600 grams)

- 1 medium onion

- 2 garlic cloves, crushed

- 1 tablespoon olive oil

- 4 fresh tomatoes without seeds and skin

- 11/2 teaspoon salt

- 1 tablespoon tomato puree

- 2 apples peeled and chopped into small cubes

- the juice of 1 fresh lime

- ½ cup walnuts, crushed (70 grams)

- 1 cup dried plums without seeds and chopped (160 grams)

- 1 cup green olives, chopped (140 grams)

- 3 peppers, chopped into small cubes (1 red, 1 green and 1 yellow)

- 7 to 8 tablespoons mayo light or normal

 

 

Method:

1. In a pressure pan, add olive oil, grill garlic and onion;

 

2. Next, put chicken, tomatoes, tomato puree, salt and grill this mixture for some minutes. Then, cover all ingredients with water. Close the pressure pan and let cook until the chicken is tender, about 30 minutes in the pressure;

 

3. Shred the chicken when it’s hot; it’s easier. To make the salpicão you just need to use the chicken. So, you can use all the other ingredients in the pressure pan to make a soup;

 

4. Meanwhile the chicken is cooking. Chop the apples into small cubes; add the fresh lime juice and reserve;

 

5. Chop peppers, green olives, plums, walnuts and reserve;

 

6. In a big bowl put all ingredients: shredded chicken, peppers, olives, plums, walnuts, pieces of apple (without the juice), mayo and mix well;

 

7. Keep the salpicão in the fridge until it is served. It’s excellent to make salpicão for many people because it yields a large portion. So, the next day I always get up early and eat salpicão for breakfast (at Christmas, everything is possible!).

 

 

FAROFA OF SPICY SMOKED PORK SAUSAGE  

 

               Total time: 1 hour  10 minutes                         Serves: 13-15 people

 

Ingredients:

- 1 smoked pork sausage, chopped into small cubes  (240 grams)

- 50 grams of bacon, chopped into small cubes

- 1 large onion, peeled and chopped

- 2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed

- 1 can of peeled tomatoes (400 grams)

- 1 red chilly without seeds, chopped

- 1 cup filtered water

- 2 cups corn flakes flour (214 grams)

- ½ cup manioc flour (85 grams)

- 1 cup black olives, chopped (65 grams)

- ½ cup parsley, chopped

- 1 tablespoon melted butter

- salt

 

 

Method:

1. In a pan, grill the bacon and reserve. Throw away the oil and, in the same pan grill the smoked sausage. It’s not necessary to put oil to grill the bacon and the sausage because they grill in their own fat;

 

2. When the sausage is grilled, throw away the oil again. In the same pan, grill the onion and the garlic;

 

3. Next, add the peeled tomato, bacon, smoked sausage, red chilly, salt, water and cook for a while, about 3 to 5 minutes, until all ingredients are incorporated and the liquid is reduced. Check the taste. Then, little by little, add the flour and mix with a resistant spoon, until result in a fluffy mixture;

 

4. In the end, put black olives, parsley, melted butter and mix with a fork because it will be easier to turn into the fluffy farofa. It’s possible to serve warm or at room temperature.

 

 

CHESTER (like a turkey)

 

               Total time: 5 hours  15 minutes                         Serves: 10 people

 

Ingredients:

- 1 big Chester, defrosted (4 kg)

- 1 cup white dried wine

- 1 large bunch of fresh parsley

- 2 fresh stalks of leek

- 11/2 teaspoon salt

- 3 medium onions, peeled

- 2 apples

 

 

Method:

1. In the mixer, put wine, parsley, leek, salt, one onion and mix well, until it turns into a homogeneous mixture;

 

2. Next, put the Chester in a big bowl; add the mixture all over it, and also inside. Keep it marinated in this mixture in the fridge for minimum of two hours or overnight to incorporate the flavours;

 

3. Then, remove the Chester from this mixture and put apples and onions inside it. Close the skin with some toothpick;

 

4. Next, tie the legs with dental floss or something that is possible to cook in the oven and wrap the legs with aluminum foil in order not to burn when it is roasted;

 

5. Put the Chester in baking pan, cover with aluminum foil, roast in a pre-heated oven at 180°C for about two and half hours; the time will depend on the size of the Chester. Constantly check the meat with a fork to be sure that it was roasted and tender;

 

6. Finally, remove the foil and roast until the skin is gold.

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