Back in April, my kids and I took a spontaneous train trip into the city of Perth one Friday evening after school and when we arrived, we found ourselves, unexpectedly, in the middle of The Twilight Hawkers Market, an international street food festival.
After wandering around all the stalls, we decided we wanted to have something Brazilian for dinner. We stopped at a food truck called Comida do Sul, which is run by two beautiful Brazilian sisters (you can find them on instagram @comidadosul and also a photo they took of Ben and me eating over here.)
I ordered a meal called Vegetarian Prato Feito. It looked like this (sorry that I hacked into it before I remembered to take a photo - it smelt so good I just couldn't help myself. I'll never cut it as a food photographer!)
So for weeks now, I have had a post-it note stuck to my fridge with the words Prato Feito on it - a reminder to myself to research this dish and make it myself. Everyone who has visited in that time and sat in my kitchen has eventually asked what it is and now, after a lot of investigation and a lot of time spent over at google translate, I am finally able to shed some light on the answer. Well, sort of.
Hunting down an actually recipe for Prato Feito was much harder than I thought it would be. After reading lots of different Brazilian blogs, this was what I had found out:
* 'Prato' means 'dish' and 'Feito' means 'made', 'done' or 'created', so possible English translations of the dish could be 'made meal', 'done dish' or a 'put-together plate' - none of which sound nearly as enticing as they do in Portuguese, do they?
* Contrary to being something exotic, Prato Feito (or PF as it is usually known) is a common meal, akin to a counter meal in Australian culture.
*Generally, it consists of a piece of meat (usually steak), some chips, rice, egg and beans.
* The egg can be served in any way the cook/customer choses and a vegetarian version simply replaces the meat with some tasy meatless treat.
Here is my version of my 'put-together plate' - oven-baked chips, rice with sauteed onions and mushroom (instead of meat), buttered beans and boiled egg with parsley.
I'm still searching for the combination of flavours that the sisters used and until I do, my Prato Feitos will have to be quite anglicised versions!
What I did find in my hunt for an elusive vegetarian PF recipe was some instructions on how to prepare it using pork. I stuck the text into google translate and stared back at the screen in horror, but when I realised what must have happened, it quickly turned into an epic LOL moment. Now at the risk of sounding critical of google translate, I'd like to state that I think that on the whole it provides an optimal service, but there are instances (especially when it comes to homographs I found) when it can also leave you more than slightly confused.
Allow me to explain. It seems that the Portuguese word miúdos has two meanings: the first is 'kids' (as in children) and the second is 'giblets' - giblets being the offal inside a bird, chicken, turkey or, as in this case, pig (I learnt a new English word in the process as well as a Portuguese one!) So miúdos de porco are pig giblets.
Anyway, what appears to have happened is that google translate favoured the first meaning of the word miúdos over the second and so the recipe came out like this:
Put the kids pig on the fire with water, enough lemon juice and sliced lemons in half. Bring to a boil, change water and bring to a boil again. Chop the kids. Add all the spices. The next morning, fry the spices and the kids. Add water and cook two to three hours until the kids are nice and soft. Pour in the blood and let thicken.
Mmm, yum yum ...can't say I'm sorry I made the veggie version instead!!
Have you ever had a funny google translate moment?
Do you know any other Brazilian recipes? (preferably ones without kids in them please!)