Famous chefs invent recipes using squid and chayote

Famous chefs invent recipes using squid and chayote

From what all electoral polls indicate, it may be that as of January 2023 Brazil will exchange oranges, condensed milk and militia lemons for a healthy duo: squid with chayote.

When it began to air, the partnership at first seemed scalloped and unlikely. But the truth is that the two very different ingredients — one comes from the mountains, and the other, from the sea — can form a duo full of flavor, borogodó and meanings.

The squid and chayote duo


From salad to lasagna, see how chefs would combine the two ingredients

“Combining seafood with chayote is a classic of Brazilian cuisine, like the shrimp stew immortalized by Carmen Miranda”, recalls Janaína Rueda, from Bar da Dona Onça.

“With these two ingredients in hand, I would make a squid rice with crunchy chayote. To make the dish even tastier, I would use a good fish head broth to cook the rice. It would be a very Brazilian dish, with a flavor of union and of empathy”, completes the chef.

In fact, when they join forces, the squid makes the chayote less tasteless and the chayote lessens the squid’s aggression.

“The squid is intense in flavor, and the chayote brings lightness. This combination has a very interesting complexity. If I were asked for a dish with these two ingredients, I would make a squid breaded in tapioca and serve it with a chayote vinaigrette. delicious!”, evaluates chef Bel Coelho, from Cuia Café.

“For me, this combination tastes like hope and victory, it is a real medicine against barbarism.”

Chefs Gabriela Barretto (from Chou and Futuro Refeitório) and Kátia Barbosa (from Aconchego Carioca), also support the approximation between squid and chayote. “There are times when the important thing is to add up. Sometimes, the squid alone doesn’t solve everything, and that’s where the chayote comes in, to simplify things a little”, insinuates Gabriela.

“This combination is real, hearty food. I would use the chayote and squid to make a salad with the freshness we need right now, seasoned with red onion, cilantro, chili pepper and Tahiti lime.”

“For me, whoever created this mixture understands humility, hope and faith in better days. The squid is full of personality, but the chayote brings simplicity and a touch of comfort to the mix. pepper, garlic, onion, lemon and coriander”, imagines Barbosa, who also works as a judge on TV Globo’s “Mestre do Sabor”.

Rodrigo Oliveira believes that this partnership between squid and chayote can be the solution to the heartburn and burning that the Brazilian people have been suffering. “The squid has more flavor, while the chayote has a discreet and soothing taste. They balance and complement each other”, summarizes the chef of the Mocotó and Balaio restaurants.

“I would combine the qualities of the two to prepare grilled squid and serve them with chayote sautéed in onions, garlic and chili peppers for a happy meal. Above all, lots of green smell”, he suggests.

In addition to fighting gastric problems, the squid-chayote duo can do more, according to Bruna Martins, from Minas Gerais, chef at the Campestre restaurant, the Birosca bar and the Gira wine bar, in Belo Horizonte.

“Lula and chayote give rise to a full plate that will take Brazil off the United Nations Hunger Map. This combination tastes like victory, perspective, abundance. Let’s let those who know how to cook make the food”, says the chef, which recommends the preparation of a delicious souffle with the pair of ingredients.

Larissa Januário, influencer and presenter of the program “Dinner o Quê?”, on the Sabor & Arte channel, proposes an even more radical union of the plate formed by the mollusc and the vegetable: “I would make a ‘lulasanha’, with interspersed layers of chayote in thin slices and a sauce of braised squid with tomato”.

“Before assembly, I would put the chayote in the frying pan to make it toasted and more crunchy, then season it with just olive oil, salt and pepper. At the end, in the oven, I would sprinkle this lasagna with a little mollica [espécie de farofa típica da região italiana da Basilicata feita com migalhas de pão, alho e ervas] to give that gratin and bring even more texture”, suggests the cook.

For her, “this is a recipe created to please everyone, a new way of doing old things”.

But Larissa warns that some basic precautions must be taken for the partnership to work: don’t add cheese, because it doesn’t go well with squid; and take care to maintain the textures of the ingredients. If overcooked, the chayote becomes mushy and the squid tough. As in the iconic phrase, “Hay que hardener, pero sin lose la tenderness jamás!”.

Another important warning comes from Roberta Sudbrack, a gaúcha based in Rio de Janeiro and one of the greatest scholars of undervalued Brazilian ingredients — such as chayote, okra, gherkin, eggplant, jackfruit and breadfruit.

“Chayote is misunderstood and misused. The most popular recipes manipulate it in the worst possible way. The vegetable has almost 90% water in its composition, so why do most Brazilians always use it in stews? water with water!”, complains the chef, owner of the Sud restaurant, the Green Bird.

For her, the possibilities for the chayote-squid duo are endless in the kitchen. The important thing is to enhance the flavor of the chayote, unlike what happens in a stew.

“Based on this premise, I would look for a recipe that preserves the original crunchiness of the two. I would make a salad with slices of grilled and smoked chayote, along with a preserved squid marinated for a few days in Brazilian spices”, he begins.

“I would finish with beet and mint leaves and a sauce based on roasted peanut milk. What people need right now is this: a lot of freshness, joy and liberation.”

Chef at restaurant 31, in downtown São Paulo, Raphael Vieira believes that squid can even improve chayote, “which is well without salt”, but that, for him, does not mean that there are no better combinations for a squid.

“To use chayote, you can only be desperate”, he understands. For him, however, current conditions may forgive the choice. “In the current economic context, where even tomatoes are expensive, using chayote in desperation is valid.”

You May Also Like

Recommended for you

Immediate Peak