Brazilian rice is one of the staples of a Brazilian dinner and the holidays are no different. Brazilians most often make use of long grain rice, and the shelled pumpkin seeds give it the holiday zest that it needs while the kale (as well as the rice) is sautéed in garlic to add a touch of flavor. A touch of hot sauce adds zest to this side dish.
One of the Portugal's most notable dishes is named after the wok-like, copper pressure cooker in which it is prepared. It can be made with various ingredients but most commonly clams (ameijoas) along with small pieces of Portuguese spiced sausage (chouriço), garlic, onions, tomatoes, and a little piri-piri. Serve this with boiled new potatoes.
The marinade suggested in this recipe is indigenous to Brazil in that it utilizes one of Brazil’s great ingredients, Cachaça, made famous around the world in the sweet taste of the Caipirinha, one of Latin America’s most popular alcoholic beverages. Balanced with the tart taste of lime juice and zest, this marinade is versatile and is the first step to making your holiday turkey. Note: This recipe requires advance preparation.
Three varieties of beans were found beneath the ash in the village kitchens of Cerén. Certainly they were boiled, and since they are bland, they were undoubtedly combined with other ingredients, including chiles and primitive tomatoes. The Cerén villagers would have used peccary fat for the lard and bacon, and of course would not have had cumin. But they probably would have used spices such as Mexican oregano.
This recipe comes from our friend, Loretta Salazar, who lived in Ecuador while she attended the university on an exchange program. The popcorn that is served on top of the ceviche is an American approximation probably of the toasted corn, or cancha, that is served over Peruvian ceviches. This ceviche is a quick one, if you use precooked, frozen mini-shrimp. Serve the ceviche on a bed of bibb lettuce, garnished with black olives, sliced hard boiled egg, feta cheese, a slice of cooked corn on the cob, and maybe some crusty bread for a very appetizing luncheon or light dinner.
I am including several ceviches from Peru because some travelers claim that they are superior to those of Ecuador. The most popular fish used in Peru is sea bass, or grouper, although every type of seafood and shellfish is used as well. The Peruvian ceviches include a few rounds of cooked corn on the cob and cooked slices of sweet potatoes. Note: This recipe requires advance preparation.
This recipe is from Kathy Gallantine, who told about her search for the best ceviche. "If you wish to try Acapulco-Style ceviche at Palapa Adriana," she said, "a restaurant on the Malecón in La Paz, Baja California Sur, you must specially request it. The ceviche listed on the menu is served without the peas, carrots, and serrano chiles. Serve this dish for a light lunch or a light dinner on hot nights when you don't even want to turn on an oven!"
This recipe is a second version of the Ecuadorian specialty. The fish can be served as an appetizer or as a main dish for a refreshing summer meal. It is traditionally served with maiz tostada (toasted corn) or popcorn on the side. Note: This recipe requires advance preparation.
Ceviche (also spelled "cerviche" and "seviche") is kind of a "Latin American sushi," raw fish "cooked" in fresh lime juice. Because of the high acid content of the ingredients, prepare this fish recipe only in a glass dish, never in a metal one.
Since Chile has a 2600-mile coastline, I would be remiss if I didn't include a fish recipe from that country. There is a minimum of grazing land in Chile, so instead of beef being the major source of protein, it is fish and shellfish. The wines of Chile are quite good, so be sure to include a nice chilled Chilean white wine when you serve this Chilean ceviche. Note: This recipe requires advance preparation.