Brazilian in Manhattan

I’m moving out!

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Hi everyone;

 brazilianinmanhattan.com is moving on (to a better place). As part of my efforts to make my blog easier to navigate and thus much more enjoyable for all, I have created a new format with a new title (everything else stays the same, I promise) I am not going anywhere! So… without further ado please come and meet me at chefwanabe.com my new “Home”. Same ingredients, same recipes and stories, only with a different cover. Please enjoy. 

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Thanksgiving Fiasco!

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Big Thanks to My Family!

Every year since we moved here we celebrate  thanksgiving dinner with our family, so I never tried to cook this meal from scratch. This week while watching my favorite cooking programs they all made everything look like a breeze. I know there is plenty of editing behind, but for some reason me and my (big ego) thought:” What’s the big deal? It’s a bird, and some pumpkins, what could be so hard in roasting some veggies and a bird?” So yesterday my big ego and me decided at “5“ o’clock to cook some ” thanksgivingish” dinner. And the funny thing is I honestly thought that by 6 or maximum 7 dinner would be ready. Ha! Ha! And Ha! My husband came home with a suspicious look in his face, and later he confessed that he had a little bite before he came home, (so much fate). And I didn’t even have a whole turkey, I was roasting a small turkey breast, but it took me 5 hours to finish it. By 10, I had burned half of the pumpkins and carrots, the gravy tasted burned, the cranberry sauce I have no comments (Well! what the hell. It was hideous!). The Brussels sprouts turned  ok but Eh! At least the turkey tasted good. We didn’t have any stuffing because we ate the bread with wine, so we wouldn’t die from starvation. In the end my lessons here were:

  • 1 I should never listens to my big ego again.
  • 2 Certain traditions “are” meant to be kept  (like having the thanksgiving dinner at our family house).
  • 3 If by all means I need to serve thanksgiving dinner to guests. I have two magical words FRESH DIRECT.
  • 4 Always start with the table decoration, because if I had to set the table after cooking you wouldn’t be looking at any pictures.

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Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

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Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

Ingredients:

For the soup:

  •  2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup (1/4-inch) diced onion
  • 1/4 cup (1/4-inch) diced celery
  • 1/4 cup (1/4-inch) diced carrot
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • Sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • About 4 cups chicken stock
  • 1/2-teaspoon ground toasted coriander, optional
  • 1 1/2 cups Roasted Winter Squash recipe
  • 1/2-cup half-and-half, optional

 Directions

Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat until hot. Add the onion, celery, carrot, and cinnamon stick and sauté until soft but not brown, about 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add the chicken stock and the coriander, if using, and bring to a boil. Simmer for several minutes. Stir in the roasted squash until smooth, and then simmer gently to let the flavors meld, about 10 minutes. Discard the cinnamon stick. Puree the soup in a blender until smooth. 

 Roasted Winter Squash:

About 3 pounds butternut squash (preferably 1 large squash). Peel with a vegetable peeler then halve lengthwise, discard the seeds, and cut into 1-inch dice. Place in a large bowl and season with salt and pepper, olive oil, and red chili flakes. Roast in a 450F Pre-heated oven for 30 to 35 minutes.

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Spicy Home Fries

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My Husband bought these little cast iron skillets and my first reaction was not so positive when I read that you can’t wash then with detergent. But now I absolutely love them. You clean them with water and salt then dry them over a stove flame. Otherwise they will start to rust. It’s very fast to cook with because it gets incredibly hot, and also you don’t need a lot of oil. Which is always good. 

Spicy Home Fries

  • Sweet Potatoes
  • White Potatoes
  • Yellow peppers
  • Chopped onions
  • Garlic
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Crushed red pepper flakes

First I roasted all the vegetables (in a 400 F oven) together with all the seasonings. Then in the cast iron skillet place the home fries around the edges, leaving enough space for one egg in the center (or two that’s up to you). And also, you can roast the vegetables in the day before to make the all morning process easier. 

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Next!

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Last Thursday for no reason my site was down, I tried to contact my host in many ways, sent emails, tried to call… 4 hours later, no acknowledgement. I lost my patience and dropped them. I Decided to pack and move, but let me tell you, it’s not an easy task. So since Thursday, I’m going through funky mood swings; from anger to hopelessness to regret to extremely annoyed. Part of it we can probably blame on PMS, but I’ll never admit it. But this is a typical situation for me, I have this ability to get into “pickle” situations like these because of my temper, I just can’t stand a half ass job, or laziness. So right now I’m doing damage control, and with a brand new host that looks like is a good one. But few things got lost on the way…I’m not a computer geek, I manage, but far from a geek. However the best of it was when the old host company sent me an email asking me for the reasons why I decided to drop it. My answer was sweet; I just said that I don’t tolerate ‘a half ass job and incompetence’. Boy!!!! That felt good.

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Trick & Treat !

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Halloween is one of my favorites holidays I love the costumes (the babies are my favorite). They all look adorable, now even the dogs get to dress up, very funny. But we never get into the costume part. First I thought that once we get used to the holiday we would try it, but it never happened. My hubby clamed that he was with a costume last Friday he went to work with a T-shirt and without shave and he sad it was “Relaxed Sunday Costume” Well….

My building has a park and we have a new management that is doing a great job with all the holidays, they always have this party with corn maze and attractions for the kids, this year they even had a carriage. When I was walking through the park I felt a tad jealous of the parents showing of they babies and kids. But when I got to the street and saw them with their kids getting inside a bar trick or treating, I felt a bit of a relief that I was alone. And hey I was going to meet my love and go out for drinks or a romantic diner, so who should be jealous here? We decided to check some new bars around our neighborhood; first bar was “ Death & Co.”  It’s from the same owner of  “The Bourgeois pig”. It was a Very cool lounge with a relaxing but fun atmosphere. Obviously no detail is left out- from the decor to the food to the cocktails, this place is very cool. The cocktails are the best. They use all organic and fresh ingredients and they even have different types of ice, depending on the drink, to allow for the drink to maintain its flavors. The people there are true mixologists who know their stuff. If you ever go to Death & Co, I have only one recommendation. Sit at the bar. If you go with more than two or three people, you can sit at the tables, but I would still take the bar. My reasons? The bar is where all the action happens. Nothing’s better than watching some quality mixologists go to work. While you might like to look at all the drinks on the menu – and there are lots – it might be even better to just let them go to work. All they need to know is what kind of mood you’re in and your favorite liquor and they can mix something up for you right away. They’re also great to talk; the place is never crowded, hot or loud, because they do not allow standing inside the bar. Which for us is a must.

Second bar was a really nice surprise; you go to a very simple hot dog place on St. Marks between First and Av. A and you get to an old wooden phone booth inside the “ Crif Dog”, pick up the receiver and a hostess open the back wall of the booth. It’s best if you have reservation the bar name is PDT (Please Don’t Tell). Very different kind of drinks including a bacon infused Tennessee whisky with maple syrup, the place have a cozy decoration, and nice vibe, but I was a bit disappointed with the food. I had the Chang dog witch was inspired by chef David Chang from Momofuku, didn’t convince me. And Hubby had The WD-50 dog also inspired by the very famous chef Wylie Dufresne from WD-50. But my disappointment was after all the suspense and nice decoration I expect more, maybe something nicer than just hotdogs. All the time my hubby was encouraging me to have another drink and I started to be a bit suspicious, but all my suspicion was gone by the end of our bar tour. He stopped in front of this desert place that he has been asking me forever to try and I always brush him of. . So he shamelessly got me so tupsy that I couldn’t think too much. You should see his euphoria on top of the sweets. And I had the next day to doom my choices “bacon infused whisky” really?

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The Devil Made me do it!

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Italian Sausage And Fennel Pizza

Ingredients

  • For the dough
  • 1 1/4 cups warm (100 to 110 degrees F) water
  • 2 packages dry yeast
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 3 tablespoons good olive oil
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for kneading
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt 

For the toppings

  • 1 bulb of fennel shaved in the mandolin
  • 1 pound fresh mozzarella, grated
  • 1 bunch arugula, cleaned and dried
  • 3 pork or turkey sausages, cooked out of their cases
  • 1 bunch basil leaves, cleaned and dried
  • 4 garlic cloves, roasted
  • Crushed red pepper flakes

Directions

For the dough, combine the water, yeast, honey, and olive oil in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook. Add 3 cups flour, then the salt, and mix. While mixing, add 1 more cup of flour, or enough to make a soft dough. Knead the dough on low to medium speed for about 10 minutes until smooth, sprinkling it with flour, if necessary, to keep it from sticking to the bowl.

When the dough is ready, turn it out onto a floured board and knead by hand a dozen times. It should be smooth and elastic. Place the dough in a well-oiled bowl and turn it several times to cover it lightly with oil. Cover the bowl with a kitchen towel. Allow the dough to rest at room temperature for 30 minutes. Divide the dough into 6 equal parts and roll each one into a smooth ball. 

Place the balls on a baking sheet and cover them with a damp towel. Allow the dough to rest for 10 minutes. Use immediately, or refrigerate for up to 4 hours. If you’ve chilled the dough, take it out of the refrigerator approximately 30 minutes ahead to let it come to room temperature.

Top the pizzas with any toppings you wish, piling them high. Drizzle each pizza with 1 tablespoon of olive oil until the crust is crisp and the toppings are cooked. 

 

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