Friday, 22 January 2010

Together is better!

Since the New Year we (me and my sister-in-law, basically) are trying to cook a perfect vegan frittata (a very good Italian dish, that's like the Brazilian omelet). We did some good food those days but it wasn't what we expected. Today I decided to try a mix of frittata, omelet and crepe/pancake, everything together. Also I'm trying to cook more things without soy because me and Matteo eat almost everything with soy.

I still have a package of chickpea flour, so I decide to use it with my traditional crepe/pancake recipe. As Isa Chandra says in her book "Vegan Brunch", chickpeas flour "lends an eggy flavor to omelets and crepes as well as a pretty, pale yellow color". The result was amazing and I'll cook it a lot of times this year, for sure.


(I made almost 1L of the final mix, that was enough for 6 big frittatas)

2 cup self-raising flour
1 1/2 cup chickpea flour
3 cup cold water
1 cup vegetable oil

1 chopped leek
3 big chopped mushrooms
1 cup chopped spinach

You can use basically all the vegetables you want with the basic dough, it will work!

First mix the flours, the water, the vegetable oil and the salt in a food processor (or blender). If you want, you can cook the vegetables for 1 or 2 minutes but I just added them direct in the dough. Preheat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Use 1 cup increments to make big frittatas. Use the back of a regular spoon or a spatula to spread the mix. Let it cook for about 3 minutes and try to flip it. Cook for other 2 or 3 minutes.

Matteo loved it! I think I got close to the regular frittata today and he was so excite
d that he also ate it with bread, like a sandwich (pane e frittata).

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Como tenho visto que muitos dos meus leitores sao brasileiros, decidi postar a receita do omelete/frittata tambem em portuges (sem acentos, me desculpem):

Essa receita da praticamente 1L de massa, que rendeu 6 frittatas bem grandes:

2 xicaras de farinha com fermento (na verdade nao muda muito usar a sem fermento tambem nao, mas com essa ela fica mais alta)
1 1/2 xicaras de farinha de grao-de-bico
3 xicaras de agua fria
1 xicara de oleo vegetal
sal a gosto
1 alho poro fresco picado
3 cogumelos grandes picados
1 xicara de folhas de espinafre picadas

Na verdade voce pode fazer a receita usando legumes variados, da proxima vez quero tentar com brocoli e couve-flor.

Bata as farinhas, a agua, o oleo e o sal em um processador ou liquidificador. Se voce quiser, pode refogar um pouco os legumes/verduras antes, mas eu usei crus mesmo. Acrescente a massa e misture. Aqueca uma frigideira grande e antiaderente e despeje a massa usando 1 xicara para frittatas grandes ou 1/2 para menores. Frite por 3 minutos e vire (com cuidado). Se voce achar que a massa ainda esta muito mole, espere mais 1 ou 2 minutos. Frite por mais 3 minutos e esta pronta.

Tuesday, 19 January 2010

Juice and the second chance

I'm starting to think that I am a person who gives second chances in general. With people and with places. I don't know if it is good or bad, but I can tell you that I had a great experience with the Juice vegetarian restaurant here in Dublin because of this characteristic. The first time that we went there was in the end of last year (if I'm not wrong) to celebrate something (that I don't remember now what was). We liked the food but we thought that they had just a few vegan options and that it was really pricey. We stayed without going there the whole year of 2009.

In the beginning of this year, when my sister-in-law, Elena, was here we went there again. It was a cold Sunday night and there isn't so many options of places to eat vegan food in Dublin that are opened everyday. We decided to skip the starters this time (the first time we went there we asked one starter and it wasn't worth it) and go to the main options. Matteo and Elena asked the "Juiceburger & Chips" and I asked the "Mushroom Wellington". Everything was delicious! And we had Tofutti ice cream - which was the only good memory I had from the first time. The only negative point of the night was the staff treatment. The girl wasn't very nice and she wasn't sure about the vegan options and the ingredients of the food. But it was a lovely night!

Juiceburger & Chips

Mushroom Wellington

Tofutti ice cream

And because of this nice second impression, we were back in Juice last Sunday. This time, it was in the evening. We thought about going there for the "Early Bird" but it was too soon and they were still on the brunch menu. I'm more used to a "all you can eat" service in a brunch, but Juice has a special menu with separated prices for each dish and there were (again) just a few vegan options. We started with the "Homemade Dips" with hummus and tapenade (black olives, fresh garlic and herb pâté with chopped nuts). Very tasty, really amazing. Then we had the "Scrambled Tofu", that comes with fresh herbs, toast, tossed salad and home fries. We loved it too! I thought I would want more food, but it was enough. I just fought with my stomach to find an empty hole for the ice cream (You know how much I love ice cream, don't you?). The juices are gorgeous too! I had orange with grapefruit. And the treatment was way better too!

Homemade Dips

Scrambled Tofu

I can tell you that we'll continue going to Juice! I still think it's expensive but Dublin hasn't too many places for us and I hope I can try to persuade them to offer more vegan options.

Tuesday, 12 January 2010

More news: Green food!

I told you 2010 would be a busy year! I have more news to share with you. Last year I received an invitation to be part of the German cookbook Das Ox-Kochbuch 4 and because of this I received another invitation: to write an article for a new magazine that some great people where trying to publish. Of course my answer was yes and today the first issue arrived in my mail box!

I can't understand nothing at all, but the magazine looks great. It's beautiful and I could see that there's an interview with Moby and an article with a great German chef called Attila Hildmann (I saw his book when I was in Berlin in November). My article is about Dublin ;-)

I really hope that they can continue with this project because Germany is a great country for vegetarian and vegan people and it's always important to spread the word. You can know more about the magazine here (in German).

Monday, 11 January 2010

All about... (vegan) feijoada!

We are having some noise troubles with our new neighbors and it's so bad. We hardly slept during this last weekend and because of the snow in Dublin (yes, it was snowing a lot even here!) we couldn't go out as much as we wanted. And you know, everybody should have good and relaxing moments at home, not the opposite. I still don't know what we'll do, but maybe another moving will be in your future plans.

Now, the food. At least food is always something good to write about. Since we moved to Dublin, I haven't cooked the vegan version of the famous Brazilian dish feijoada yet. And I love it! I love black beans, which are the bases of this amazing food! To say goodbye to my sister-in-law last week, I decided to invite some friends and try to cook the feijoada. They aren't vegan or vegetarians but they always seem interested in trying my food. I hope they liked it because me and Matteo were happy about eating it again after a long time!

The original feijoada is traditionally made with slow-cooked black beans and lots of meat. There are a lot of good recipes for a vegan version in the internet, but all you need to make a good vegan feijoada are the black beans, vegetables and, if you want, some seitan and vegan sausages. I didn't use a specific recipe, but you can check here and here for two good options.

The best way to eat the feijoada is with white rice, "couve" (a type of kale, if I'm not wrong, very tasty and popular in Brazil) and "farofa" (traditionally made with eggs and manioc flour, but you can make a vegan version with the flour and onions, for example). We didn't have the couve and the farofa, but it was still very good and I want to make it more times during 2010!

PS. We watched "Whatever Works" and it's so good! Can't describe how good is the combination of Woody Allen + Larry David.

Saturday, 9 January 2010

All about... 2009!

Before starting this post, I decided to read the one I wrote about 2008. It's really good to look back after some time. Remembering things with some distance (in this case, of time) is really good. And I can say that one sentence that I wrote back in January 2nd was 100% true: "I know things will be fine in 2009".

And the word I chose to describe 2009 is "building". I really spent my year building my new life: home, friendship, love, family. It was the year to learn how to keep some relationships with the distance, to make others, close, to deal with my family in the other side of the ocean, to have a new house (two, in fact, because we moved to a bigger apartment last October), to keep things and let others go, to live in Dublin, to love Dublin, to keep my marriage amazing and full of love, to start new things, to close some doors and open new windows.

As you can notice, it was a full and busy year. I could see all the seasons coming and going and have memories for them all. It's really nice when you come from a place that is always hot and always look like summer. I don't know if I would be able to write about everything that was important to me in 2009, but I want to write about some things.

In February, after coming back from our first travel to Berlin to see my lovely friend Clarissa, I decided to start baking vegan cupcakes and cakes. Some people should think that I always did that, but I never thought about it before going to the cupcake shop in Berlin. I like to bake, I was used to bake some cakes (and birthday cakes for friends) but had never done it as a "job" or a "business" before. But the crisis was all around Dublin and I couldn't get a job in my professional area, journalism, so I decided to try. I talked a lot to the owner of Cupcake Berlin and she gave me the most important tips to begin and I started to bake. First for the new friends here, then for selling in the hardcore gigs and, finally, for selling in the Govinda's restaurant and for some orders. And I had a busy year baking my vegan cakes! And everybody loves them ;-) In general, I cooked more too
. Being at home made me cook more and it is a good experience that I want to keep.

Matteo and I moved all the HUP (our independent hardcore label) stuff to Dublin, released the Irish band Famine, helped to bring Bane to play Ireland in April ans released their 2 new EPs in Europe and South America; we released the Italian bands To Kill, Locked In and helped the first release of Go Back Home; we went to basically all gigs that happened in the city and to other festivals in Europe during the summer; we made the last Have Heart South America tour and I had the chance to travel with them, Shipwreck and Rise and Fall for a week and see Have Heart last shows in Europe and say goodbye to my favorite band of the new generation. All this was really amazing because I can't live without the hardcore and the straight edge in my life. We saw bands that I never imagine to see, we met amazing people, we had tons of fun.

I started to make some friends around and I could keep the best friends I have in my life, even with the distance. Friendship is really important to me and it's not easy to have true friends around. I think I'm building some new friendships here and I'm sure I'll always have the Brazilian friends in my life, doesn't matter where I am. I saw these friends - and my family - in June in Brazil and it made me happy enough for the rest of the year. I celebrated my birthday in July with my new Irish friends and I think they have no idea about how important it was for me. I spent some amazing days with Matteo's family. It's so great having them around. Barcelona in September was unforgettable! Christmas and New Year were perfect. The first in Dublin and couldn't be better.

I still don't have a job that I'd like, but I'm writing for a magazine from London, I have a column in a Brazilian website to talk about veganism and other things I believe, I have 5 of my vegan recipes published in a German book, I have an article in a new German magazine (and I hope I'll have more), I worked with my ex-boss again in a project and it's always great to keep this relationship with him and the place I worked for almost 4 years in Belo Horizonte.

I really can't complain about 2009. I still have a lot to do to make my life better here but I'm sure I built the bases, solid ones. 2010 will be a better year. It is already being.
I have new goals to be achieved and I'm positive about them.

Finally, I just like to say THANK YOU to everybody that was part of my life in 2009 and I hope you're still here.

Tuesday, 5 January 2010

Hello 2010!

Finally I'm making my first post of 2010! Hope everybody had a great time. I had an amazing Christmas and New Year with Matteo's family around! We had so much fun together that the only thing I missed was my family. But we can't have everything. 2010 is starting in a good way and I'm happy. 2009 was a better year too (I will write about it later).

As I told you last year, Christmas in Italy was always with a lot of food. Two days (25th and 26th) just to stay at home and eat! Well, this year we were in Dublin and I'd like to make things in my way too, so we had the first celebration in the night of the 24th, with a great dinner and the presents being opened. And we had the Christmas lunch and the St. Stephen lunch too.

December 24th: strogonoff

December 25th: snacks, risotto and frittata

December 26th: pasta al forno

December 26th: more frittata

Everyday: cupcakes

My sister-in-law ate my vegan cupcakes for the first time and she loved them! She stayed here until today and we had so much fun! Hope she can come back more times this year. And, of course, we kept cooking delicious vegan food all these days!

Special cupcakes for my sister-in-law, Elena. She loves blue!

Omelets (recipe from the Vegan Brunch book)

Savory and sweet pancakes

Happy 2010!

Go vegan!


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