Joanna Portello is the Brazilian head chef of RARE - the exceptional steakhouse at Desert Palm PER AQUUM the uber cool boutique hotel on the edge of the city.
We caught up with Joanna and asked her about a must try from her menu as well one of her favourites from somewhere else in Dubai.
What is the must try dish on your menu? Tell us about it
I would definitely recommend the delicious Empanadas. Each family has their own special recipes and they are one of my favourites to make and also to eat. They can be eaten for breakfast, lunch and dinner; served as appetizers or snacks, they can also easily make a full and satisfying meal.
In Latin America empanadas are often served during parties and festivals as a starter or main course. Shops specialize in freshly made empanadas with many flavours and fillings.
The dough is made with wheat flour and tallow and the fillings usually differ from province to province. Some places use chicken and some places beef, spiced with cumin and paprika. Some other fillings are onion, boiled egg, olives, or raisins. Sometimes they also contain ham, fish or spinach and they can be spiced with pepper. A fruit filling is used to create a dessert empanada.
What is your favourite restaurant or food experience in Dubai and why?
One of my favourite restaurants in Dubai is Texas De Brazil located in the Mall of the Emirates. Everything I tired was super succulent and delicious and my personal favourites are Feijoada and Brazilian Picanha prepared by Chef Felipe De Luna. The ambience is amazing and the place has a wonderful rustic vibe.