Sunday, March 4, 2012

A Brazilian Phenomenon: Ellan!

Almost every year, if I have the time and the money, I am lucky enough to go visit a friend or two that I used to see every day, but nowadays, with grown up jobs and significant others and the occasional kiddie or two, those friends become once or twice a year friends. Strathy, a dear friend of mine, hailing from the land of Virginia with an undying love for the city of Baltimore, is one of those friends. I met him in Cape Town, South Africa, and through pure cosmic coincidence, we  happen to be neighbors on adjacent houses on Church Street. Ten years and running, we’ve been friends.
My dear friend, Strathy
Fortunately for me, visiting Strathy is always an adventure, partially because he has always lived outside of New England, and that provides a fun “exotic” field trip, but he also has awesome friends! There’s nothing like going to visit a friends, meeting their buddies, and suddenly feeling like one of the gang. On this particular occasion, I had a free weekend, and Strath made the call to come down. We would be hanging out on one night with his roommate, the bubbly, joyful, and simply delightful Ellan.
Ellan hails from Brazil, and is fiercely proud of this, sharing pictures and stories of his much missed homeland, among a whole lot of boisterous laughter and the occasional comment praising our recently lost treasure, Whitney Houston. (I’ll admit at this time, I don’t know if I've never listened to so much Whitney in my life as during this little party.) But the reason that Strathy was so excited about my coming down to hang with the fabulous Allan was for good reason.
The amazing Ellan!
Back in Brazil, Allan had spent his youngest years observing the family culinary secrets in his mom's kitchen and later apprenticing with a private home caterer, learning how to cook all of Brazil’s most treasured dishes. He later, at the ripe old age of 19, opened a restaurant in his home town, and cooked up some pretty damn legitimate meat courses, until his opportunity seeking departure to the USA several years later.  I’m fairly convinced that I won’t be headed to Brazil anytime relatively soon. But Ellan’s cooking, and his enthusiastic style of teaching really brought me a touch closer to the Southern hemisphere.
Therefore, we’re going to take a little bit of a look at the recipes cooked by my new friend, Ellan, during my most recent visit to Strathy while he lived in the all too cool and somewhat well kept secret neighborhood of the Ironbound in Newark, New Jersey. I only hope I can do it justice.

No comments:

Post a Comment