Happy 2017! Welcome to our first podcast of the year! Before we chat about that – can you believe we’ve been doing this for almost a year?
We were excited to chat with Steve Chaves of Malasada World in Cambridge, Ontario, Canada for our first podcast of the year. Angela nicknamed Steve the Willy Wonka of Malasada World, which is located about an hour west of Toronto in Cambridge, Ontario, on the 401. Check out this article on malasadas from Eater. Yes, the one ‘s’ in the spelling of ‘malasada’ is intentional – Steve says it’s easier for English speakers to pronounce since the word comes from two words: ‘mal’ and ‘assada’.
Before opening the shop about seven months ago – on Dia de Portugal weekend 2016, no less! – Steve worked as a classically-trained French chef all over Canada for over 25 years, spending time in Alberta & British Columbia, too.
Steve took note of the specialty dessert and donut craze – Cronuts and gourmet cupcakes, anyone? – and thought “Why can’t we do that with malassadas?” He was also inspired by the malasadas of Hawaii, which have been popular for decades, thanks to bakeries like Leonard’s. Did you know that the Portuguese, primarily from Madeira & the Azores, brought them to the Aloha State in the 19th century, working on the sugar plantations? In Madeira, malasadas (similar to Bolas de Berlim) were enjoyed on Shrove Tuesday (Terça-Feira Gorda), the Tuesday before Lent. The tradition continues to this day – Mardi Gras is known as Malasada Day in Hawaii!
Which recipe does Steve use to make his traditional malasadas? Many! – Steve combined his Avó’s recipes as well as those of other family members and friends – to create the perfect malasada! Some of their specialty flavors include: Passion Fruit Meringue, Dulce de Leche, Chocolate Hazelnut, Apple Crumble, and the Doughnata – yes, a nata and malasada hybrid. New flavors are released every few weeks. Send us your suggestions to pass along to Steve, please!
What’s next? Steve dreams of being the next David Rocco, traveling through the Azores and and eating and writing about food. Cheers to that!