In the kitchen with Luciana

Want to please a Brazilian? Cook shrimp. Want to please an Englishman? Cook meat. That’s what I’ve learned after 13 years of living in England. I am not a huge fan of filet mignon normally. It might be the most tender of cuts, but it lacks flavour. I personally prefer meat that’s off the bone and has a little fat. Bone, by the way, has actually become very popular. The most revered restaurants in the world now serve marrow as a delicacy. With champagne, oysters and scallops. Let’s get back a time when the only mouths hankering after marrow belonged…

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Curing is the oldest way of preserving food. Salt helps prolong the validity and freshness of meats, fish and vegetables, a practice very common in Brazil (dried meats) and Portugal (cod). Some processes may vary, but the common denominator is always salt. Here, I also use cachaça and sugar. This recipe most closely resembles what is known as Gravlax – a Scandinavian salmon that is cured in sugar and salt, and then served with dill. It’s delicious and super-easy to make. The only drawback is that it takes 48 hours to prepare, but it’s always great to have ready-to-eat salmon…

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The inspiration for this edition’s recipe about Brazilian gastronomy comes from the lyrics of a Roberto Carlos song. Winter in London has arrived and the urge to stay indoors under a warm blanket only increases. Casseroles, soups, tea, hot drinks and a decent drop of red wine are the order of the day, to keep the body toasty in this cold. If you have someone to help keep you warm, then you’ll both be doubly cosy with this little soup: so open a bottle of wine and throw yourself into the kitchen! The secret of this recipe is to use…

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With December comes the smell of Christmas and the arrival of festive ingredients on our supermarket shelves. Putting it all together sometimes takes a bit of creativity in terms of finding out what goes well with what. Rabanada (a variant of “French Toast”) is a Brazilian Christmas tradition, but is sometimes put on the table as part of the Christmas spread with little appreciation. I decided to raise the bar when it comes to our Rabanada, using seasonal ingredients here in London. Figs, nuts, the five oriental spices and Stilton cheese are the secrets to a typical London Christmas. You…

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With the arrival of Christmas and all the end-of-year parties, the good old turkey recipe is back on the table after a long absence. In Brazil, it is one of the stars of Christmas dinner, served alongside a number of typical accompaniments: stuffing, fruit in syrup, eggs, salads and rice with raisins. Various people have asked me how to cook the turkey without it drying out. The answer is simple: the turkey should be basted every 20 minutes with the meat’s juices that gather in the baking tray. I also recommend you use a cooking thermometer. You can use all…

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Eggs, bacon, sausage and beans might seem like the perfect set of ingredients for a traditional English fry-up, but add a sprinkling of farofa (a stuffing made with manioc powder) and some kale, and this recipe will instantly bring a little taste of Minas Gerais to your home, without you having to leave the kitchen. It’s a simple recipe and can be served with roast beef, chicken, fish, or indeed on its own. The secret is to have either a decent smoked sausage or chorizo. And given how easy it is to find pre-cooked beans in the supermarkets these days,…

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In each edition of BBMag, Chef Luciana Berry, semi-finalist of Master Chef Professional UK in 2014, will bring fresh cooking advice and her famous kitchen recipes. Let’s cook! Hi everyone! It’s such a pleasure to be able to share some of my cooking experiences here in the land of Her Majesty. Everyone who meets me knows how immensely proud I am to be Brazilian and I have spent much time here trying to promote a Brazil that most foreigners are unfamiliar with! Our mix of exotic ingredients and tropical cuisine is, although little explored, our calling card. Regretfully, there isn’t…

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