I reconnected with Daniela Narciso in São Paulo and she really wanted me to try one of Brazil's most famous snacks... COXINHAS!
Daniela takes me to a new and upcoming monthly 'Street Food Festival' and introduces me to Pricilla Moretto who owns a restaurant downtown called Tangerine but comes along monthly to promote her business, build relationships with other traders and make her beloved Coxinhas.
Traditionally made with chicken breasts and cream cheese then wrapped in a flour and a chicken stock pastry, breadcrumbed and then deep fried. These snacks can be found mainly in bars served quite wonderfully next to a cold beer. Fresh, they are one of the finest bar snacks ever created, old and chilled they can be bland and disappointing.
Pricilla's on the other hand are anything but disappointing, she has made them since she was a child and believes her recipe is worthy of any dish even though she is now a restaurant chef and owner. She can sell up too 500 a day and her success is down to frying them fresh and serving straight away. She doesn't just stick to Chicken either, Duck & Apricot, Ox Cheeks and Truffled Mushrooms are just some of the other stuffings she produces. She's says if its tasty and fresh then it works.
She then invited me behind the stall and teaches me how to fill and mould into the famous 'Chicken Leg' shape that they're known for. As look up, I notice her queue keeps getting bigger and bigger. Brazilians love them and now that I have been taught how to make Coxinhas, I totally have the bug and I am have made my very own version.
6 chicken thighs
2 tsp hot smoked paprika
2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
Sea salt and black pepper
150g cream cheese
50g plain flour
2 eggs, beaten
100g dry white breadcrumbs
Vegetable oil for deep frying
For the pastry:
500ml chicken stock
250g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
2 tbsp of unsalted butter
For the salad:
Half a cucumber, peeled, deseeded and finely diced
1 banana shallot, peeled and finely chopped
1 red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
Small bunch basil, leaves shredded
Small bunch mint, leaves shredded
Juice of 1 to 2 limes