Wednesday, September 08, 2010

The Other Wife and the LaLa

Nothing like finishing off your Labor Day weekend with a festival right? Food, fun, rides, games, sunshine, it all sounds awesomesauce! That is unless you are at the West Warwick Portuguese Festival, lovingly called "The LaLa" by those in the know. The LaLa is an event that one of E's cousins has been going to for years, being from the Portuguese side of the family, and he clearly has fond memories of the place. When we got an invite to tag (Ha! I just typed gag instead of tag, Freudian, no?) along this year, we jumped on board. I should have given it a second thought when I realized it is held in West Warwick (I realize for non-Rhode Islanders this is meaningless info, but trust me). By the way, that girl up there? That's me with my hair straightened, which happens all of 3 times a year and freaks everyone out. That girl is lovingly called the "Other Wife" by E. As in, "Hey Other Wife! Make me a sandwich!" He can dream.

So back to the LaLa. It started with a bang. The parade, if you can call it that, was full of local politicians, little girls in gowns, and five minutes gaps between groups. There was a band that played no music, and a crew of young dudes in suits and sashes, all wearing gold sunglasses, all talking on cell phones. Turns out they are the board of the Portuguese Club, elected officials you might say. Elected officials who later cut all the lines with their girlfriends and yelled at the teenage food vendors for not speaking Portuguese, cause  "Yo! If you gonna work the LaLa, you gotta speak the language, ammiright?" Classy.

The rest of the event featured highlights like the oddly inappropriate Wacky House ride:

Why are there legs in the house's mouth? And why does it have a mouth anyway?

Someone explain to me how a drunk cop without pants is kid friendly. Please.

Oh and then, then guys, were the tee shirts:

Too bad he's never actually seen any. Oh, and he was helping run one of the kids fishing games.

Wait, I though Hulkamania ended in the early 90's? I'm so behind on the times. It still freaks me out that a guy in his fifties would actually attend an event where he could purchase a brand new Hulk tee shirt and then wear it proudly in public. 

Sigh. I did find the time in the middle of all of my stunned people watching to stuff my face with a big caramel apple and the only thing that actually made the place worth visiting, a cacoila (which everyone around pronounces like caserla, just FYI). It's a very typical Portuguese American sandwich served on those awesome soft rolls, dripping sweet juice all over you and the ground. It's pork, so how can it not be good? I'm going to make some in the crock pot this week, cause I just can't get enough. 

Portuguese Cacoila Sandwiches

2 lbs. pork (butt, shoulder, whatevs)
2 onions, sliced into rings
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp. red pepper flakes (unless you have a Portuguese market nearby and then you can use Pemento Muida)
2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/2 cup OJ
1/2 cup red wine                                                      
1 cup water

Slow Cooker: Add all ingredients to a slow cooker and toss to coat. Cook on high for 4 hours or until pork falls apart easily. Shred and serve on soft Portuguese rolls.
Stove Top: Add all ingredients to a large pot and cook over medium heat for 1 to 1 1/2 hours. If liquid begins to reduce too much, add a bit more water so that the meat will not dry out. Shred and serve on soft Portuguese rolls.

*Note, the above sandwich photo is borrowed from Jim and Mary, cause I ate mine too fast to take a picture if it. Apparently the New Bedford Portuguese Festival is where it's at. Next year I'm headed north.


Pierce said...

I'd scarf down one of those bad boys like it was my job - fantastic looking sammie. Love your hair by the way :-) I flat iron mine twice a month...if I'm not too lazy.

Anonymous said...

It's so funny how true this is - remember when Jess and I didn't even recognize you the last time you straightened your hair!? We walked right by you!

The men from the W.Warwick festival are hilarious! Can't believe I've never been there (oh wait, those people freak me out!). Too funny. I definitely snorted when I read the Boobie t-shirt.

Love, Jenny C

Megan said...

My Portuguese hubby would love these. I have pork in the crockpot right now, but it's not Portuguese. Bookmarked!

Brenda said...

My Portuguese hubby would love these too. If I tell him about them he'll want them tonight. So I won't. :o)

Anonymous said...

First of all its not called the New Bedford Portuguese Festival. Its the Feast of the Blessed Sacrament. Its the largest feast in the Western Hemisphere. FYI New Bedford is not north its east so maybe you should buy an Atlas and brush up on directions.

Joanna said...

Actually dear Anonymous, I live in New Jersey, so New Bedford is NORTH from my house. Not east. Thanks for your concern. Thanks also for the update about the proper name of the festival in New Bedford, which I never claimed to know anything about:) This post is about a West Warwick, RI festival.

Anonymous said...

Omg! I dreamed about the Lala last night and found your post googling to see if it was still going on. It's comforting to know some things haven't changed lol. Super fond end of summer kid memories.