Viva la Vida: Festive Recipes for Entertaining Latin-Style

Overview

Spicy shrimp ceviche, smoky steak with mole, refreshing mint mojitos, creamy dulce de leche...nothing says fiesta like Viva la Vida. This eclectic and colorful cookbook collects 100 mouthwatering recipes from all points south-Cuba to Colombia and beyond. From fiery salsas and dips to intensely flavored grilled or roasted meats to sinfully sweet desserts, Viva la Vida highlights simple yet special dishes guaranteed to liven up any fiesta latina. A source list and glossary offer readers a helpful hand in ...

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Overview

Spicy shrimp ceviche, smoky steak with mole, refreshing mint mojitos, creamy dulce de leche...nothing says fiesta like Viva la Vida. This eclectic and colorful cookbook collects 100 mouthwatering recipes from all points south-Cuba to Colombia and beyond. From fiery salsas and dips to intensely flavored grilled or roasted meats to sinfully sweet desserts, Viva la Vida highlights simple yet special dishes guaranteed to liven up any fiesta latina. A source list and glossary offer readers a helpful hand in understanding and finding unusual ingredients. Stunning color photographs showcase the irresistible dishes and exotic drinks that will be the focal point of any gathering. With Viva la Vida, the theme of every party is always "long live life."

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
In the wonderful bouillabaisse of ethnic cuisines that have come to our shores in the past couple of decades, nuevo Latino is one style that hasn't trickled down from restaurant fare to home cooking (in non-Latino households) nearly as much as many of the other regional approaches.

It's no big surprise, considering that there are far and away more books on various Asian cuisines and the foods of the Mediterranean than there are of the second half of the Americas.

But Rafael Palomino, a successful New York chef, is spreading the nuevo Latino gospel in "Viva la Vida."

It is an attractive book in many ways. The unfussy layout and taste-tempting color photographs by Susie Cushner first draw readers in. The recipes will make them want to get into the kitchen.

A native of Bogota, Palomino strays beyond Colombia's borders for specialties of neighboring countries. From Cuba, he borrows sandwich de media noche. This midnight sandwich is piled high with roast port, smoked ham, white cheddar and pickles.

Peru is represented by papas a la huancaina, an intriguing dish that tops cooled, boiled, sliced potatoes with salsa mixed with crushed saltines, evaporated milk and spices, served on lettuce leaves.

Skipping to Brazil, skewered shrimp is bathed in a marinade of garlic, olive oil and Caipirinha, that country's national rum and lime cocktail. The grilled shrimp is served with a dipping sauce made of the rum concoction mixed with mango nectar and pineapple juice.

Fruit juices and nectars, all easily found in U.S. markets, play key roles in many preparations, and for ingredients that are less ocmmon, Palomino thoughtfully suggests acceptable substitutions. If you can't get to an ethnic market for aji mirasol or aji amarillo, two Latin ground chili powders, he directs you toward cayenne. Malanga chips, served alongside ceviche and also crushed into a coating for foods, can be replaced by Terra brand chips.

The author's classical French training with Michel Guerard lead him to some Euro-Latin fusion, such as empanadas stuffed with lamb, Nicoise olives and goat cheese. He suggests snacking on the pastries with a mango and lemongrass sangria.

Palomino draws on memories of his Bogota childhood as much as he does on his American restaruants' menus. There is lechon asado, crispy-juicy roast suckling pig that is the traditional centerpiece of his family's Christmas dinner and such simple dishes as arroz moro, the Palominos' version of rice and black beans, made both colorful and delicious with green onions, corn kernels, diced tomato and roasted garlic, all seasoned with a sazon spice mix (or cumin if that's not at hand). Viva la vida translates to "long live life," and Palomino's easy-to-follow recipes carry the promise of a very palatable, as well as long and healthy life. -San Francisco Chronicle

Publishers Weekly
Nuevo Latino cooking is still waiting for its breakthrough cookbook, and while this effort from Palomino (Bistro Latino) and writer Gargagliano lacks the heft needed to serve as a thorough exploration, it does open up new territory with fun, straightforward recipes. Palomino is a native of Colombia, but he has an enthusiasm for all the cuisines of Latin America, from chunky Palomino's Guacamole from Mexico to Sparky Peruvian Potato Salad with mangos and corn. He offers some appealing fusion, too, in the form of Asian Ceviche with soy sauce and rice vinegar and Tuna and Chipotle Burgers that he suggests be served at a Super Bowl party. As user-friendly as this book is, with its brightly colored layout and clearly written recipes, it does require some hard-to-find ingredients, like the malanga required to make Sea Scallops with a Malanga Crust and the panela (Colombian brown sugar) called for in Roasted Squab with Black Pepper and Panela. However, substitutions are offered, as is a list of mail order sources. Desserts include Fried Spanish Doughnuts with Dulce de Leche Sauce, and Dark Rum and Pineapple Upside-Down Cake, and what could have been a throw-away chapter on drinks is instead a source of all kinds of traditional and nontraditional cocktails such as Cuban Mint Cocktail, Mango and Lemongrass Sangria and Passion Fruit Margarita. (June) Forecast: Just in time for summer, this book is charming all around and should seduce consumers with its attractive packaging. Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780811831840
  • Publisher: Chronicle Books LLC
  • Publication date: 4/1/2002
  • Pages: 204
  • Product dimensions: 1.00 (w) x 1.00 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Rafael Palomino, born in Bogot, Colombia, and raised in Queens, is the owner and executive chef of the Sonora restaurants in New York City and Port Chester, New York. He lives in New York.

Arlen Gargagliano has traveled extensively in Spain and South America. The author of English-language textbooks, she lives in New York.

Susie Cushner is a Boston-based photographer whose work can be found in Quick Pickles (0-8118-3015-2) as well as Gourmet, Martha Stewart Living, and Saveur magazines.

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