Anyway, I've eaten creme de mandioquinha in restaurants and decided to try it out myself. In my internet search, I found quite a few variations on the traditional recipe, which seems to include only mandioquinha, chicken or vegetable stock, onion, and garlic.
the traditional stuff, as explained on this blog
So I decided to combine things from all of the variations I found, and I also made some changes of my own. I wanted something thicker and more complete as a meal. The apparent debate in the creme de mandiquinha world is whether or not to add créme de leite, or heavy cream, to the mix. I decided against it, but you might be for it. Isn't food fun?
Anyway, I added chopped chicken, carrots, and green beans to the recipe, and topped it with tomatoes and green onion. Mine came out like this:
Necessary ingredients (serves 2):
*About 1kg of mandioquinha (it looks like this when you buy it at the store, and you should try to cut it into slices, the way you'd slice a carrot, kind of like this)
*1/2 of a big onion, or one whole small onion, chopped up into tiny bits (you can put more or less, depending on your love for onions)
*A few cloves of garlic, also chopped up into tiny bits (onion + garlic + food processor = success)
*A splash of olive oil
*Chicken and/or vegetable cubes to make stock (I actually used my new love, Knorr potinho de legumes, mixed with a bit of a chicken bullion cube)
*1 small carrot, chopped small, like this (I used the food processor, but see the @@@ note below)
*A handful of green beans, chopped up the way you cut the carrot
*1 tomato, cut up pretty and with the seeds removed (to use as a topping)
*A bit of green onion for the topping
*1 large chicken breast, chopped into small chunks
I read other recipes that put broccoli, bacon, kale (couve), sausage, parsley, oregano...take this recipe and run with it! Vegetarians, you can skip the meat and still have a great dish.
@@@You might run into the problem that the thing you use to steam vegetables has holes that are too big for the size of your vegetables. You can either cut the vegetables bigger, or you can just boil them.
*Cut up the onion and garlic in the food processor (very small! Liquidy!) and fry them on low in some oil with the chicken.
*Heat your bullion cube(s) in water and a bit of olive oil to make a stock. To get the consistency of the creme de mandioquinha in my picture above, you need enough water to only slightly cover the mandioquinha when it's in the pot (see the first picture below).
*Peel the mandioquinha, then cut it up into equal sized pieces. Cook it in the stock, covered.
*Separately, steam the carrots and green beans, and/or any other vegetables you're using, also cut up very small.
Yes, three pots. See how much water you need? You can get away with a little bit more if you want something thinner. Also, the mandioquinha pot should be covered; I just took off the lid for the pic.
*Once the mandioquinha is very soft and starts turning into a mush with the stock, but before it has a chance to start sticking to the bottom of the pan, put the mandioquinha WITH THE STOCK in the blender.
*Blend blend blend. It's thick, so blending is not easy. Patience! Also, good luck cleaning that blender afterward.
*Add the mandioquinha back to its pot. Try not to just eat it all now. If you're too tempted, you can scoop out what's stuck in the blender with your finger and eat that. Wait, what? I mean...
*Add in the chicken/onion/garlic mix, plus the steamed vegetables. Mix it all together. If necessary, heat it a little more.
*Chop up the tomato into very small, pretty pieces and take out the seeds. Make the green onion equally pretty.
*Top the crème de mandioquinha with the green onion and the tomato, and/or whatever else you're using.
One with tomato, and one without. Alexandre thought tomato to be a strange combination with the rest of it, but I liked it!
So what do you think? Delicious...or sacrilegious? What would you add, if anything?