Bolacha Maria Cake

Bolacha Maria

Hello again,

Besides rice pudding, I love Bolacha Maria cake which is a popular dessert within the Portuguese community. This cookie cake reminds me so much of a Tiramisu because of the layering of the cookies.  Although this recipe was created in 1874 by an English baker, it became popularized in Spain and Portugal, particularly during the Spanish Civil war. The creation of  the cake was  to celebrate the marriage of the Duchess Maria Alexandrovna of Russia with the Duke of Edinburgh. It was to help celebrate an exuberant economy, a symbol of prosperity.   Quite the Victorian dessert, but I made a slight variation shhhhh….I added guess what ?…..some liquer…Kahlua.

The recipe:

1 package  of Bolacha Maria cookies  (use 2-3 rolls of packaged cookies)
2 cups of icing sugar (more or less) (you must taste as you add the sugar)
3 egg yolks
1-1/2 sticks unsalted butter
1 cup of espresso coffee (room temperature)
1 lemon or lime for zest (optional)
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tablespoon  of Kahlua
sugar sprinkles – colorful ones and/or blanched sliced  almonds, or crushed hazelnuts are nice toppings as well.

The method:

1) Add your soft butter with egg yokes, and begin mixing with electric mixer, adding  slowly the icing sugar,
2) Add your 3 tablespoons of coffee, and mix then add your tsp. of vanilla extract. Add some Lemon or Lime zest, about 1-2  tsp.
3) Add your tablespoon of  Kahlua and again mix well, taste with your spoon to see if it needs more coffee or sugar, or Kalhua 🙂  (you will need to experiment to your taste buds)
4)Then after your icing is done to your liking, with a paper towel sheet spread some butter over top of your cake plate.  
5)Then you begin dipping your cookies and create the layering process. You would prepare this on a round cake plate.
6) Dip your cookies once to fully wet the cookie, but don’t drench it because it will fall apart when you spread your icing.
7)Start with a cookie in the middle and work your way around it like a flower.
8)With your wooden spoon scoop a lump of icing and begin at the center and spread to the surrounding cookies. Making sure all cookies are covered with the icing.
9)Then alternate each layer so as to overlap the layers.
10)When you get to the top layer, cover the rest of your icing and the sides to cover all parts of the cookies. Then you top with your sprinkles or sliced  almonds or crushed hazelnuts, heck you can even crunch up a cookie and use that instead.

Incidentally, would sir or madame appreciate a spot of tea with a slice of Bolacha Maria?
Enjoy !



Octopus Stew with White wine

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Bacalhau Video 1

King Crab video

Portuguese Cook : King Crab episode

A spectacular seafood dish…..soooo good mmmmmm…..

Filet of Sole video (baked)

PORTUGUESE COOK Filet of Sole episode

Watch an Italian cook show a Portuguese chick how to make fish, baked not fried. Watch out when it’s time to make bacalhau, woo hoo !!!

Caldo Verde

Today is a day that I really need some comfort food. Whenever it’s cloudy, rainy or cold I think of my mom’s soups. My mom has so many soups that I am learning to make, one of them is Caldo Verde, but the chorizo is optional. I like making the vegetarian version as well.  Here’s the recipe, and enjoy !

Extra equipment: a hand blender.

Ingredients: (Yields 5 – 6 persons)
1 1/2 cups of thin shredded Collards or Kale
1/2 medium onion
1 tablespoon of light olive oil
2 Litre pot and fill 3/4 of the pot with water
1 1/2 cubes of chicken  or vegetable bullion
1 tbsp. of parsley
1 tsp of sea salt
1 tsp of pepper
Chorizo sliced (optional, vegetarian style without the meat)
3 large-sized white potatoes, peeled and sliced in 1/8 sized pieces.
1 tsp of Garlic powder to taste. & or pimento red pepper paste (1 tsp)

The Method:

1) I fill 3/4 of  the pot to about with water, add my potatoes and 1/2 onion cut in a few pieces, 1 tablespoon of olive oil and let it boil at medium heat.

2) About 20 min. later add your bullion and let it dissolve, add your salt, pepper.

3) Turn the stove off. Let it cool about 5 minutes or so.

4)Then with your handblender, blend the potatoes with the broth, until you have a cream of potato consistency, it will be a smooth-thickness consistency.

5)At this point add your thick sliced collard or kale, and some parsley, and a few pieces of sliced fried Chorizo, begin cooking again on low heat for additional 10 to 12 minutes.

6)When the collard have  softened turn the oven element off. Take a taste test after the soup has simmered down, and add your garlic powder or additional black pepper  or pimento paste to taste.   

Really simple soup dish and so healthy for you.  I eat it with a piece of baguette bread or any good European style bread, with a side of sliced tomatoes  for afterwards. For me, it’s a meal in itself.

Let me know what you think and drop me a comment, thanks.

Sliced Tomato plate

Here a simple vegetable side dish you can serve on the table with your main meal or even on its own with some fresh popsecos (Portuguese buns).

Fresh beef steak or any type of tomato, I prefer straight from my garden.


1/4 cup of fresh virgin olive oil
1 tsp. bits of fresh dried Rosemary
pinch of sea salt
pinch of black pepper
1 1/2 tbsp. of  white or red vinegar
1  pinch of cumin
1 tbsp. of cut up parsley
1 lemon wedge
1 tsp of red pimento sauce
pinch of sugar (optional)

Add all the dressing ingredients and stir it with a fork.

Pour over your sliced tomatoes. You can also add sliced cucumbers, and I also add fennel and celery as well.

Great sides are the perfect accessories to the picture perfect meal. Enjoy !

Mannie Dasilva

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