The idea of opening a space for vegetarian or vegan cuisine had been in the minds of Larissa Abbud and Joana Agostinho for some time. The two friends met when Larissa left Brazil, where she had a catering company, for Portugal to do a Masters in Gastronomic Sciences. But it was only when they found this space of a small, but very cozy, grocery store at number 6B of Rua de Santo Amaro in Lisbon that they decided to move forward.
“In Brazil I did not make vegan food,” says Larissa, but in Portugal she thought “there was no complete vegetarian food.” In the spaces where he ate, it seemed to him that “meals were poorly nutritional”. Therefore, in the recently opened Quintal d’Santo Amaro (has just over a month of existence) the proposal is a lunch box with a full meal.
“We think the dish is interesting for its composition,” says Larissa with a big smile. “It always has a cereal, which can be rice, quinoa, couscous, a protein, which can be a chickpea, a bean burger with beets, vegetables and a puree to compose the textures. A lot of people think vegan food is just salads, but it’s not like that, it’s very important to have different textures, so I use a lot of nuts as well. “(A box that includes, besides the plate, soup, juice or dessert costs 13.50 euros, the formula soup, toast and juice or dessert stands for 8 euros.)
They decided that the space would be not only vegetarian but vegan (although Larissa is not, eating, albeit very rarely, meat and some fish, especially octopus, which she loves). However, she can not eat anything with milk, which has led her, for many years, to find alternatives. Here you can explore one of the things you like best: “I really wanted to make vegan desserts, to use these ingredients and turn them into a tasty and very attractive thing. I make, for example, vegan chocolate mousse with chickpeas to replace the egg whites, I make pies based on nuts, dates and cashew nuts that I also use to make vegan mayonnaise. ” always, in addition to the dessert of the day, homemade cakes and cookies.
“My biggest challenge is not making a vegan menu, I’m very used to it. The challenge here is not to have a stove, just an oven. “The only thing that is not made in space is the soup, everything else is done without a stove. Every day there is, besides the box, toasts, very beautiful, barred for example with a beet cheese and decorated with edible flowers, as well as juices and cakes.
Although the idea is to take the box to eat at work or at home (there has also been a great demand for the catering service), many customers choose to eat in one of Quintal’s six seats and stay in touch with Larissa, who feels that more and more “the Portuguese are finding it legal” this type of food. “It’s a process that’s happening.”
Thanks to Publico for the very good Article in Portuguese