If you are anything like I am you are having a bit of Olympic withdrawal. Yes I cheer for all the athletes and there were some really special performances that came from outside the US of A . The Refugee Olympic Team alone was enough to make a few tears drop. I was totally into Brazil the home country winning gold in the beach volleyball and Soccer. It was super fun to watch.
Those are just two amazing monuments but Seriously though I am all about the Red, White and Blue!!I cheered as Phelps did the impossible 28 medals, Wholy Shnikes!! The swimmers ! The swimmers I say again. I can swim I love to swim I love being in and around water but what those men and women do in the pool is amazing. Yeah I know there is one turd in the pool and he needs to be shocked to get the gunk out!!But other than that Wow!!
If I were to list all the amazing things Americans did at the Olympics we would be here all day and some of you would be bored because this is a food and travel blog after all. Here is my quick run down and go…. USA 121 medals, Wrestlers, The Ohio State in the house! Basketball for sure! The ladies in Track can run damn fast! Rowing they sure make those little boats go fast all while getting yelled at! I can not do a somersault so what The women’s gymnastic team does blows my mind up! As stated above I can swim but water polo takes it to another level its treading water but with another human sitting on your head while throwing a little ball and being dressed in a silly cap. I did not know it was a thing but there is a special medal for fair play and one half of a duo to win it this year was Abbey D’agostina an American along with Fellow runner Nikki Hamblin from New Zealand. If you have played sports and know about sportsmanship google their names and watch how they won the fair play medal it will restore some faith in humanity and it will also wash the sour taste of the “swimmer who will remain nameless” out of your mouth!
BRAZIL!!!! you did a wonderful job hosting the Olympics leading up to the games there were signs it would be a disaster would terrorism come creeping back to the games as it has in the past. Would people be ill from bad water and bad food. Would stadiums tumble because they were not complete. Nope, Nope and Nope!! Short of the diving pool turning a wild color green and maybe that was just from envy because the real action was in the shallow end of the pool not the deep. You threw a wonderful and amazing Olympics.
We all know at least two of the things Brazil is famous for. Carnival it is the much bigger cousin to our own Mardi Gras. Carnival is a 5 day party starting Friday before Ash Wednesday and ending on ash Wednesday the start of Lent. The whole country is awash in festivities we here in America probably recognize the parades in Rio de Janeiro’s best, as that party alone draws about 4 million people. The Brazilians also have another symbol recognized the world over and that is Christ the Redeemer Statue it is 98ft tall statue of Christ with his arms opened wide inviting all to him. His arms span 92ft. You have seen it in movies and on TV. I hope one day to visit Rio de Janeiro and see it for myself.
Unless you wait till Mardi Gras and head to New Orleans you will be hard pressed to enjoy Carnival like you were in Brazil and as Far as a gigantic Christ monument we have two of them in the United States One near Eureka Springs, Arkansas its 67 feet tall and has welcoming arms just like in Brazil and a little closer at least to my home is the King of Kings and Lux Mundi(Latin for Light of the World) Statues in Monroe Ohio. So if you are wanting a little feel for Brazil go ahead and travel to these destinations they do not need a passport.
One of the reasons I hope one day to visit Brazil is so I can learn more about their food culture. I am very limited in my knowledge of their cuisine. I know we have Brazilian steak houses here but some how I do not think our huge buffeted Brazilian Restaurants are serving authentic Brazilian fare. They do have steak on a spear and will serve you meat pounds of meat and Brazil is known for grilled meat but I think that is as far as it goes. I am willing to concede if I am wrong about the steak houses here in our major cities and if someone knows of somewhere I can get Brazilian food that is authentic as sitting in a restaurant in Sao Paulo please share and I will try it because I think I will love it! Years ago I went to a Brazilian Steakhouse while living in Chicago. I took 5 businessmen to dinner and we ate steak lots and lots of steak and that was all I remember as the one other thing we did was drink what the waiter told us was the drink of Brazil a CAIPIRINHA. It was something so light and delicious and they went down like water. I just kept thinking if this was how they lived in Brazil I was all in packing my bags and moving tomorrow! Steak and this delicious drink life could not be better!
I poured my associates into cabs our business was done. It turned out that the night we closed an amazing deal and celebrated a milestone for the company I worked for. It was also the second worst hangover I have ever had and by morning with my temples throbbing I was cursing Brazil and her stupid steak houses! The next year it was requested from my business associates we stick with just the American steak house, apparently those poor guys hangover was 10x’s rougher than mine as they had to board planes and fly home. I just had to lay on my couch with a cool towel over my eyes.
Now you maybe asking why on earth would I ever want to drink that cocktail again well I will tell you Brazil has struck gold!! not the gold you wear around your neck after running real fast but the gold that says your national drink maybe one of the best things ever created.
Let me share with you a little about this drink the CAIPIRINHA it is so simple and yet so glorious it is lime, sugar and Cachaca. Cachaca is the part that may make you fall down. It is in its most basic sense fermented sugarcane distilled into a spirit. A bit like rum but not, a bit like pisco but not it is its own drink and to compare it too closely would be a disservice to Brazilians and their drink.
The only way I know how to fix my Olympic withdrawals is to make the drink of Brazil and watch some #Rio2016 highlights.
- 1 Lime cut into 8 wedges
- 1 heaping Tablespoon of Granulated Sugar
- 2oz Cachaca
- ice/rocks glass
add the lime and sugar to the rocks glass muddle(mush real good) fill glass with ice add Cachaca stir for about 15 seconds to make sure all sugar is dissolved and evenly mixed. Enjoy!
You have been warned they go down real easy and have a kick but what better way to watch American Kayla Harrison kick her way to Judo Gold than with a little Brazilian kick of your own!