On the Ball: The Making of Chef Eileen Andrade's Arroz Con Pollo Fritters

By Kendyl Kearly | Jaclyn Warren

By

Kendyl Kearly
Jaclyn Warren

Every dish has a story at Finka Table & Tap—most of them retellings of Chef-owner Eileen Andrade’s family history. Her parents are restaurateurs, and her brother provides the croquetas from his factory. So when one of the Finka prep cooks accidentally over-cooked risotto, arancini came to Andrade’s mind, but she tapped into her Latin roots to create arroz con pollo fritters. Spicy, creamy, crunchy, and an ideal bar snack, the fritters capture the essence of arroz con pollo, a homey, filling staple of Latin America, using arborio rice, chicken, red and green peppers, beer, mozzarella, ají carretillero, and ají amarillo mayo. “This represents me because it was my favorite food growing up,” Andrade says. “I don’t want to call this elevated Cuban food; I just gave it my own version without destroying it.”

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