Miami Restaurants Share Recipes to Make While You're Social Distancing

Crispy Brussels from Katsuya Brickell
Crispy Brussels from Katsuya Brickell Photo by Rangel Suarez
click to enlarge Salted caramel chocolate truffles - JONATHAN MOLEA
Salted caramel chocolate truffles
Jonathan Molea
Last week, the City of Miami Beach shut down restaurant dining rooms and bars in an effort to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus. Shortly after, Gov. Ron DeSantis issued the same order for all of Florida, with restaurants only allowed to serve takeout and delivery.

Some of the city's most comforting dishes are still available for takeout, but if self-isolation is bringing out your inner chef, why not try a few of these recipes created by local chefs?
click to enlarge Aperol spritz - SWEET LIBERTY
Aperol spritz
Sweet Liberty

Aperol spritz from Sweet Liberty Drinks & Supply Company

Sweet Liberty's classic Aperol spritz is a little bitter, a little bubbly, and totally refreshing.

  • 1 oz Aperol
  • 3 oz champagne
  • Soda water (to taste, depending on your glass size)
Build in a wine glass with ice. Add an orange slice for garnish.
click to enlarge Sagrado Cafe's Brazilian fudge balls - PHOTO BY LUNA GARCIA
Sagrado Cafe's Brazilian fudge balls
Photo by Luna Garcia

Brazilian fudge balls (brigadeiro) by Taciana Kalili of Sagrado Cafe

Brigadeiro is Brazil's beloved bite-sized delicacy made of only three ingredients: condensed milk, cocoa, and butter. The mixture is then hand-rolled into little chocolate balls. Half a tablespoon is usually used as a measurement, but you can make your treats as big or small as you'd like. This recipe will yield two dozen balls.

Preparation time: 30 minutes

  • 1 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk
  • 4 tbsp cocoa powder, sifted
  • 2 tbsp butter, plus more for rolling balls
  • Pinch of salt
  • Chocolate sprinkles (or any other flavor of sprinkles)
Step 1. In a small saucepan, combine sweetened condensed milk, cocoa powder, salt, and the butter and heat it over medium-low heat, mixing constantly to prevent burning until it thickens. Run your wooden spoon (or spatula) in the middle of the mixture. If it takes awhile for the mixture to move, your brigadeiro is ready.

Step 2. Let the mixture cool to room temperature.

Step 3. Spread your sprinkles on a plate or in a bowl. Once the mixture has cooled off, grease your hands with butter and roll the brigadeiros into little balls and into the sprinkles. Place them in paper/foil candy cups or eat them right off the plate.
click to enlarge Coyo Taco's chilaquiles - PHOTO BY DEYSON RODRIGUEZ
Coyo Taco's chilaquiles
Photo by Deyson Rodriguez

Chilaquiles con huevos by Scott Linquist of Coyo Taco

Need your Mexican fix? Coyo Taco's Scott Linquist recommends chilaquiles, the popular dish made with beans, grated cheese, pico de gallo, and eggs. Add cooked chorizo, browned ground beef, or shredded chicken to the mix if you are extrahungry.

Serves 4.

  • 8 eggs (scrambled or cooked sunny side up)
  • 8 oz of tortilla chips
  • 12 oz jar of salsa verde
  • 4 oz of Mexican crema or sour cream
  • 16 oz grated cheese (white cheddar or Monterey Jack)
  • 8 oz refried black beans
  • 4 oz pico de gallo
  • guacamole (optional)
  • 4 tbsp cotija cheese
  • Pinch chopped cilantro on each serving
Step 1. In a large mixing bowl, add chips, salsa, sour cream, and half the grated cheese. Toss until all chips are coated with sauce, cheese, and crema. Place the mixture in a large baking dish, and sprinkle the remaining grated cheese over the top of the chilaquiles. Bake for about 15 minutes in a 350-degree preheated oven until cheese is fully melted and chips are lightly browned.

Step 2. Spoon warm black beans in the center of each serving bowl and pile the chilaquiles on top. Crown them with eggs, then spoon a dollop of sour cream in the center. Sprinkle with cotija cheese and pico de gallo and garnish with cilantro. Top with sliced avocado or guacamole if available.
click to enlarge Crispy Brussels from Katsuya Brickell - PHOTO BY RANGEL SUAREZ
Crispy Brussels from Katsuya Brickell
Photo by Rangel Suarez

Crispy Brussels sprouts from chef Rangel Suarez of Katsuya Brickell

This recipe by chef Rangel Suarez from Katsuya makes a sweet, caramelized dish packed with protein, fiber, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and an exotic touch of Asian flavor.

  • 3 oz Brussels sprouts (could use frozen)
  • 9 oz mirin sauce
  • 7.5 oz sake
  • 9 oz soy sauce
  • 3.5 oz sugar
  • 4 oz balsamic vinegar
  • Shaved almonds
  • Scallions
Step 1. Cut out the core of the Brussels and deep fry until dark golden brown.

Step 2. Make the balsamic reduction by combining balsamic vinegar, sugar, sake, and mirin and soy sauces over heat until sugar is dissolved. (Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator for a month.)

Step 3. Once sprouts are fried, place in a mixing bowl and toss with an ounce of the balsamic vinegar reduction.

Step 4. Add almonds, chopped scallions, and additional balsamic vinegar reduction to taste.
click to enlarge French toast at Café Bastille - PHOTO BY JOANNE FLEISCHMAN
French toast at Café Bastille
Photo by Joanne Fleischman

French toast from Benjamin Amsallem of Cafe Bastille

Benjamin Amsallem shares his classic recipe, which can be customized with berries, chocolate syrup, or bacon. Wash it down with something bubbly or your favorite juice served in a flute for a fancy touch.

Ingredients (batter)
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 4 beaten eggs
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
Ingredients (toast and topping)
  • 1 brioche loaf
  • Berries (or other fruit)
  • Maple syrup (or your favorite sauce)
  • Powdered sugar
Step 1. Mix dry ingredients (sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg) together. Whisk the remaining ingredients (milk, heavy cream, eggs) together. Combine both mixtures slowly and set aside.

Step 2: Cut one-inch slices of brioche and dip each into mixture.

Step 3: Cook in a hot pan with butter until you obtain a dark honey color on both sides.

Step 4: Top with sliced fruit, powdered sugar, and maple syrup.
click to enlarge Boozy milkshakes by Michael MIna - PIZZA & BURGER BY MICHAEL MINA
Boozy milkshakes by Michael MIna
Pizza & Burger by Michael Mina

Boozy milkshake by Michael Mina from Pizza & Burger at Fontainebleau Miami Beach

An over-the-top milkshake is easy to make and a real treat. For a family-friendly version, just skip the alcohol.

Michael Mina from Pizza & Burger suggests his salted dulce de leche milkshake.

  • 4 scoops vanilla gelato
  • 2 shots of milk
  • 5 pumps dulce de leche syrup
  • Pinch of salt
  • Jack Daniels to taste
Blend all ingredients together. Add chocolate pretzel and caramel popcorn; top with whipped cream and dulce pearls.
click to enlarge Richard Hales' plant-based Beyond Beef burnt ends - GRATEFUL HOSPITALITY
Richard Hales' plant-based Beyond Beef burnt ends
Grateful Hospitality

Plant-based Beyond Beef burnt ends by Richard Hales of Society BBQ

If you're a vegetarian looking to add more iron and protein to your home-based diet, this recipe is for you. At his Society BBQ eatery, chef Richard Hales offers a plant-based option made with Beyond Beef, which has less fat than regular meat and no cholesterol. You can easily replicate these Texas-inspired barbecued bites at home. 

  • 1 package frozen Beyond Beef ground "meat"
  • Store-bought Kansas City barbecue sauce
  • 1 oz kosher salt
  • 1 oz coarse ground black pepper
  • 1/2 oz smoked paprika
  • 1 oz brown sugar
Step 1. For the spice mix, combine kosher salt, pepper, and paprika in a bowl and reserve.

Step 2. For burnt ends, form 16 one-ounce nuggets of Beyond Beef and place on a sheet tray. Sprinkle with spice mixture liberally, brown sugar, and KC barbecue sauce.

Step 3. Preheat oven to 300 degrees (if using a smoker, heat to 285 degrees with oak wood). Cook burnt ends for 30-35 minutes or until fully cooked and tender. Transfer to serving dish while hot and serve with onions and pickles.
click to enlarge La Fontana's rustic bread bowl - LA FONTANA STEAKHOUSE
La Fontana's rustic bread bowl
La Fontana Steakhouse

Spinach dip rustic bread bowl by chef Roberto Gonzalez of La Fontana Steakhouse

If you are quarantined and getting sick of grilled cheese, take melted goodness up a notch with chef Robert Gonzales' rustic bread bowl recipe. "It's easy to make and can serve the whole family. Since the bowl is edible, that's also one less dish to wash."

Preparation time: 25 minutes

  • 2 cups yellow onion
  • 1 tbsp chopped garlic
  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 6 cups heavy cream
  • 2 cups grated Parmesan cheese
  • 4 cups chopped baby spinach
  • 3 loaves rustic bread
  • 2 cups mozzarella cheese

Step 1. Melt unsalted butter in a medium heated pot. Add chopped garlic and yellow onion and sweat for two minutes. Incorporate the heavy cream and let it all simmer for ten minutes. Throw in Parmesan cheese and turn off the stove.

Step 2. In a blender, blend the chopped baby spinach and the mix from the pot for 2 minutes.

Step 3. Cut off the top portion of the bread and remove inside dough. Fill the bread with the creamy spinach mixture and top with bread crumbs and mozzarella cheese. Heat in a 375-degree preheated oven for eight minutes until cheese is melted and brown.
click to enlarge Salted caramel chocolate truffles - JONATHAN MOLEA
Salted caramel chocolate truffles
Jonathan Molea

Vegan salted caramel truffles by Carolina Molea of L'Artisane Bakery

Pastry chef Carolina Molea's chocolate truffles are a vegan, crunchy flavor bomb. Says the chef: "I use wholesome ingredients like quinoa and coconut milk to pack these cuties with nutrients." The chef's go-to chocolate is Republica del Cacao Ecuador 62 percent, but you can use any dark chocolate with the same cacao liquor content. You could substitute quinoa for cacao powder, shredded coconut, or toasted nuts.

Ingredients (crunchy quinoa)
  • 1 cup washed quinoa
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • Pinch of kosher salt
Step 1: Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and transfer to a paper-lined baking sheet. Bake for about ten minutes in a 375-degree preheated oven until golden brown and crunchy.

Step 2: Let cool down and keep in an airtight container. Will last for a couple of weeks in the fridge.

Ingredients (chocolate truffle)
  • 1 oz light agave syrup
  • 2 oz sugar
  • 4.5 oz coconut cream
  • 5 oz Ecuador 62 percent chocolate
  • Pinch of kosher salt
  • 1 tsp refined coconut oil
Step 1. In a pot, warm up the coconut cream. Do not boil it or the fat could break.

Step 2. In a separate pot over medium-high heat, make a caramel combining the sugar and the light agave syrup. Do not stir.

Step 3. Once the caramel reaches a deep color, add the coconut oil and mix well using a whisk. Add warmed coconut milk slowly, whisking carefully, cooking for about a minute.

Step 4. In a plastic bowl, semi melt the chocolate in a microwave 30 seconds at a time to avoid burning. Add the hot caramel sauce to the semi-melted chocolate and mix well using a rubber spatula. Add salt and vanilla extract. Finish the emulsion using an immersion blender.

Step 5. Transfer to a flat plastic container and cover with plastic wrap touching the chocolate surface to avoid making a skin. Let rest in the fridge overnight. Next day, scoop out small portions of the ganache and make the truffles with your hands. Cover in crunchy quinoa and let them rest in the fridge in an airtight container. Will last up to seven days in the fridge.
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Juliana Accioly
Contact: Juliana Accioly