Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Aletria Doce (sweet angel hair dessert)

Aletria is the Portuguese translation for "Angel Hair Pasta"
"Aletria Doce" or Sweet angel hair pasta, is a very popular recipe mainly in the northern regions of Portugal in the area of Tras os Montes and Minho.
There are many variations of this dish as well from region to region as well as family to family.
In other areas of Portugal rice is used instead of the pasta and called "arroz doce", sweet rice.
The recipes are very similar.

The Ingredients are simple,
8 oz of Aletria (angel hair pasta), (the round ones that are made for soup are the traditional)
1 cup milk
1 cup water
1/2 stick of butter
pinch of salt
one lemon or orange (zest or lemon peel)

This is where it changes, some recipes use eggs or egg yolks, more sugar, no water, and in some cases no milk.

Aletria can be made "milk free" and is made that way in some areas. Or try using coconut or soy milk as a milk alternative.

I find it easier to cook the pasta in the water with the lemon or orange peels,
when 1/2 cooked drain the water & add the milk, butter & sugar so it slightly covers the pasta, continue to simmer & stirring to evaporate the liquid.
when the liquid is gone & pasta is a very sticky consistency, spread the pasta thinly onto plates to cool & dry.
sprinkle & decorate with cinnamon.

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