Tastes and traditions of Portuguese pastries and breads.
A family owned and operated business, established in 1991, Nova Era Bakery is one of the early bakeries in Toronto to offer European-style coffee, bread and pastries to the growing Portuguese community. Maintaining traditional methods of daily handmade, freshly baked breads and pastries, from the famed Portuguese pastel de nata to a simple chocolate doughnut.
The establishment of the Portuguese community took place during the post-WWII period in the 1950s with a large influx of Portuguese migration to Toronto as political and economic factors in Portugal pushed many to consider emigration to another country to begin a new life. They brought with them traditions from the homeland which today is being kept alive, and thanks to places like Nova Era Bakery which serves possibly the best pastel de nata around.
Pastel de Nata, made with a flaky puff pastry tart filled with a creamy egg custard with hints of vanilla and lemon is a popular Portuguese pastry, and brings back so many childhood memories. It is believed the pastel de nata were created before the 18th century by Catholic nuns at the Jerónimos Monastery in Belém, Lisbon. My mouth waters as I even write these words – p a s t e l d e n a t a.
For something savoury try Rissois de Camarao, a shrimp patty with a creamy, rich filling made with shrimp, minced onions, salsa, and spices. Commonly served as an appetizer or as a light snack, they are usually paired with codfish cakes when typically served at bars, restaurants, and cafes.
On a nice sunny day grab yourself a snack to go and walk to nearby Trinity Bellwoods Park, find yourself a bench overlooking the pit and a view of the CN Tower in the distance – with good friends of course.