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Amazing foods you must try in Brazil
Brazilian cuisine is delicious colorful and diverse, reflecting the country's mix of native and Portuguese, Italian, African, Japanese, Lebanese, German (and many more) immigrants. If you still haven’t tried a “moqueca” or didn’t even know cashew juice actually exists, we’ve got you! We’ve picked the most awesome dishes you need to try while in Brazil.
Brazil’s national dish, feijoada is a hearty black beans stew cooked with sausages and cuts of pork. Kale, rice, farofa and are typically served on the side with some slices of orange to ease digestion. This delicious dish is traditionally served on Wednesdays and Saturdays at all types of restaurants in Brazil: from the casual buffets to the top hip restaurants.
But what is the origin of this popular dish? Some believe it was created by African slaves, while others believe it is an adaptation of Portuguese or European stews.
You can try your hand at making a feijoada with this video.
It isn’t fair to simply describe this dish as toasted manioc flour, because farofa is so good and it tastes like nothing you’ve tasted. It’s very easy to make this versatile dish: add bacon, scallions, eggs, olives, and even banana if want! Be creative! Farofa is usually sprinkled over rice and beans, and it's an essential side dish for feijoada.
Think of fish stew, but tastier. Fish or shrimp are cooked in a traditional clay pan with coconut milk, tomatoes, onions and spices. There are two regional variants of the dish: Moqueca baiana (version from Bahia with palm oil) and Moqueca capixaba (from the State of Espirito Santo). They are both amazing. Pair it with rice and farofa.
Pão de queijo
There is nothing like a fresh out the oven pão de queijo! Crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside, these small cheese breads are Brazil’s best kept secret and can be enjoyed at breakfast or any time of the day. I love to have them as an afternoon snack with a cappuccino.
Exotic tropical fruit juices
Have you tried cashew juice? What about acerola, cupuaçu, carambola (starfruit) and cajá? In Brazil you can try a variety of delicious and healthy juices, including the star of them all: açaí. Yes, you can find açaí bowls in the U.S too, but in Brazil they are less expensive, and abundantly available.
You can try making your açaí bowl
Brazil and Argentina have been arguing for a long time who makes the best barbecue, and while I can’t say which one is the champion, I must say that if you are in Brazil and love meat, you must go to a churrascaria (Brazilian steakhouse) and have a feast on roasted prime cuts served on long skewers, and sliced on your plate by the waiters.
Salgadinho(s), which literally translates as “little salt”, are savory snacks highly regarded by Brazilians, and there’s a good reason for it. They are amazing! From the beloved coxinha (made with shredded chicken and potato) to pastel, bolinhos, esfiha and empadinha, the options are almost endless and all mouthwatering. You can find them at coffee shops and juice bars pretty much everywhere in the country, and can't leave without trying one!
At first you may think it’s a Sheppard’s Pie, but after the first bite you will realize this is completely different game. The Brazilian version is prepared with shreded carne seca - a dried, salted meat similar to beef jerky - and manioc/yucca purée. The result is delicious and it pairs very well with a cold beer.
Brazil’s national pride is sweet, decadent and goes by the name brigadeiro. An all-time favorite at birthday parties and other types of celebration throughout the country, this small chocolate ball has gained gourmet status in the recent years, and can be found at “brigaderias” - brigadeiro boutiques - in different flavors such as pistachio, hazelnuts, coconut and many other creative and delicious versions. You can make it at home. It’s super easy! Check out the recipe.
Which Brazilian food you can't wait to try?
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