Hope you’re staying cool, friends!
It’s been a hot week and even hotter weekend. Between massive amounts of soccer, we were able to drag our bones into the kitchen for some really interesting cooking! (We learned quite a lot about this nation’s history while looking for cuisine!)
THE DINNER: We picked Mozambique for this week’s meal. Upon doing the research for the recipes, I was not shocked to read that many of Mozambique’s inhabitants are very poor. The country is recovering from wars and natural disaster and many people do not eat hearty meals every day. This is especially the case further inland in the rural communities. There people’s daily diet is less varied. However, along the coast the cuisine is largely based on fresh seafood. The staple food of Mozambique is a maize porridge and meat or vegetable stew. Mozambique is justifiably famous in Africa for its cuisine. With its long coastline and rich fishing grounds, it’s no wonder that many of its famous dishes revolve around fresh seafood. The nation was actually a colony of Portugal up until the very recent history (we’re talking mid 1970’s here, people) so almost all of it’s dishes are very much Portuguese in origin and less African in nature.
Think lots of olive oil. fish stews. paprika and red pepper. bread and pasta as sides. Much of their wine and beer is also based in portuguese tradition. This one nation actualyl offered us our first challenge in deciding on meal. There was WAY too much to choose from. One thing kept sticking out, however, that was Piri Piri (sometimes spelled Peri-Peri). They eat this pepper on chicken and prawns mainly and it seemed to be the go-to regional dish. We planned on grabbing some tiger prawns and having a go at it! We went one of two traditional routs for serving this dish: wild rice pilaf (the other was a good crusty bread to soak up the sauce….and mannnnnn, did you want to soak up ALL that sauce!)
Peri-Peri Prawns Recipe: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Prawns-Peri-Peri-231244
OVERALL COUNTRY SCORE:
Ease of prep and cooking: ONE STARS out of five for the Dinner.
The only reason I have to give this one star instead of no stars is because we had to take ten minutes to shell the prawns. That’s literally how simple this meal was. For the amount of total flavor and scrumptiousness (is that a word? Who cares, it totally defines what this meal was) this meal should have been soo much harder than it was. Shellfish is one of my personal favorite things to cook because it doesn’t get much easier than meat that literally signals to you when it’s perfectly done. It goes from opaque and brown to a “HEY THERE I’M FINISHED” perfect blush shade of pink. It’s a thing of beauty. Pretty idiot proof as far as prep and cooking this one.
Best dish of all time scale: FIVE STARS out of five for the Dinner.
This dinner was agreed upon to be the best we’ve had on our journey s so far. Yes, we’ve done eleven countries out of a zillion. Yes, we will most likely have more five stars to come. But this one in the mean time is already getting encore shouts from the back of house. It was perfect. The end. Seriously. I couldn’t write words to describe the buttery, spicy, luscious perfection. You’re just gonna have to take 20 minutes to makes this one.
For next week, mom is flying solo with Germany! I’m going to be out of state, but she’s gonna cook up a storm. It’s one of her personal favorite countries and we were really excited to travel back to the food of the Deutsch ever since we visited in 2011. Can’t wait to see what she comes up with for the meal! Get it, Frau Brovsky!
Auf Wiedersehen as the Germans say!
– L & K