Can you imagine a coxinha with pasta made from vatapá? And an Easter egg? Because these are two recipes that were created by Hanna Soares, from Rio de Janeiro, after she moved to Salvador. And, as if the snacks themselves were not unusual, the entrepreneur told the iBahia that it all started while she was making another different dish that she discovered a few years ago during dinner: vatapá gnocchi.
“I love making thematic things and naming things. When I learned the stitch from a vatapá that I could make a gnocchi, then I said: ‘What if I roll this up in the shape of a coxinha?'”.
The vatapinha, as it was named by Hanna, is a success and draws the attention of customers. Salty has been produced since 2017, but, according to Hanna, it has only become popular in recent years. In addition to vatapá in the dough, the recipe uses chayote moqueca, which mimics the taste of shrimp, as a filling, and is fried in cottonseed oil. And, for those who prefer a healthier way of preparing the dish, it is still possible to bake the delicacies in the oven or in a deep fryer.
“I only fried it in palm oil the day I made it, to test it out, but later I saw that it worked well in cotton oil. But it can also be made in the air fryer and in the oven”.
Vegan for 9 years, Hanna explains that the recipes come from her desire to eat certain dishes and not find other places selling them. That’s how Veganas Baianas was born in 2016. “There wasn’t a vegan food offer in Salvador. It was very difficult to go out and eat, and everything. And then we went to an event and then the food ran out very quickly and we couldn’t eat it. I said, ‘Man, we need to open a vegan business in Salvador'”.
“At parties, people didn’t have anything to eat. Now, they take the vegan snacks and even the guys who eat meat eat the guys’ vegan snacks, out of curiosity”, he says.
And that’s how the coxovo also came about. The carioca told the portal that she never really liked sweets and wanted a salty alternative without animal products in the recipe to eat at Easter. So, he decided to put the dough for the coxinhas he produces in the form of an egg, which is usually made with chocolate.
“I created the coxovo for Easter, because I’m not a person who eats a lot of sweets. So I thought: ‘Wow, would people like to eat a salty Easter egg?’ that we have and I assembled it in an Easter egg mold, stuffed it, made a cover and fried the whole thing. Then, I decorated it with drumsticks”, he said.
In 2023, salty reaches the third year of production. It can be ordered with three filling options: jackfruit, vatapinha and shiitake. As a follow-up, the customer also receives six drumsticks, which decorate the savory dish. This year, the menu for Easter still offers empadovo, in the flavors of heart of palm, chayote moqueca and sun-dried tomato with arugula. Prices range from R$60 to R$75. Contact is made on the restaurant/buffet profile on Instagram or WhatsApp.
“It’s already the third time that we make the menu with them, and each year that passes we see more than the previous year. In the last year, we sold about 30 coxovos. I want to see if this year I can double that mark. . I hope to top last year”.
Now, anyone who thinks that the names and dishes read so far are the most unusual is wrong. The restaurant also has cakexinha, which is a cake made with coxinha dough; and the coraxinha, which is a big heart made with the same base, produced especially during Valentine’s Day.
“All my recipes I developed things that I like to eat. So, I cook as if I was eating. So, I cook with a lot of love”, he explained.
The recipes have been a hit with customers, especially at the food fairs that take place in Parque da Cidade, in Salvador, once a month. It is no wonder that, in November of last year, Veganas Baianas was invited to join the restaurant team at AFROPUNK.
“It was the first time at a festival that vegans and vegetarians were able to eat in a very calm way. I thought the initiative was sensational”, he extolled.
Hanna told the report that she was very happy with the participation and that the results were more than positive. “I was very excited. Trembling at the base, because it’s a big festival and we’ve never done anything the size of AFROPUNK before. It was the biggest thing we’ve ever done. We made an insane production. It was a month making salty for do the job. I managed to generate more jobs, because I had to hire extra people to work too”.
For the future, the entrepreneur aims to transform deliveries into a fixed point as well, but in a slightly different way. All to meet a need she sees as a vegan. “My life project is to open a bar, because it’s the biggest lack of a person in Salvador to sit down to have a beer and eat a vegan snack, without having to think about what they’re going to order”.