While living in Brazil, Beth and I have been on the quest to learn Brazilian recipes. We both love food, and learning some recipes from the region is a fun way to learn a bit more about the culture. So far, we have three recipes that not only do we really love, but that are also fairly easy. I’ve included them below.
Note: In Brazil, most grills (churrasqueiras) don’t have a grate. Instead, you stick everything on giant skewers that are roughly the size of a sword. We skewer the pineapple through the center since that’s what we have. You can also cook the pineapple on a rotisserie or directly on the grate. Just make sure to turn it every so often if it’s on a grate
- 1 ripe pineapple
- Go ahead and fire up the grill so it’s hot when you’re ready to grill the pineapple
- Cut the top and bottom off of the pineapple
- Cut the outer layer off of the pineapple. You basically want to skin it.
- Combine the sugar and cinnamon using as much or as little of each as you’d like. We like 1 part cinnamon to 2 parts sugar.
- Rub the sugar and cinnamon onto the pineapple.
- Skewer the pineapple, or else place it directly onto the grate of the grill.
- Let the pineapple cook until the sugar on the outside has started to caramelize. Usually 20-30 minutes, but time isn’t critical.
- Cut up the pineapple and enjoy!
Note: Since we’ve arrived, we’ve seen “Portuguesa” pizzas advertised everywhere. We decided to try one from Dominos and liked it so much that we’ve started making it ourselves. The only ingredient that may be hard to come by is quail eggs. They’re very common here, but you may have to hunt for them if you want them. A couple of hardboiled eggs chopped up would work, but quail eggs have a much milder taste.
- Your favorite pizza crust (we have to make our own because pre-made ones are hard to come by here)
- 8-12 hardboiled quail eggs (instructions here)
- Green Peppers (some people say these have no place on a Portuguesa pizza)
- Black Olives
- Sliced Ham
- Pizza Sauce
- Preheat oven according to directions for pizza crust
- Cut the quail eggs in half and set aside
- Chop peppers and onions however you prefer
- Sauce your pizza
- Add mozzarella to taste
- Add ham, olives, green peppers, and onions
- Sprinkle oregano over the pizza
- Place the quail eggs flat side down on top of everything
- Bake pizza as instructed by the pizza crust directions
Note: Upon arriving in Brazil, Beth sent a message to our friend Bethann who lives in Amazonia asking for her favorite Brazilian recipes. She said that we had to learn to make brigadeiros. They are a traditional recipe all over Brazil, and they are easy. They are also super tasty and we keep having to remind ourselves that they are a sometimes-thing.
- 4 TBS cocoa powder
- A 14oz can of Sweetened Condensed Milk
- 2 TBS of butter
- Pinch of salt
- Chocolate sprinkles
Combine the cocoa powder, Sweetened Condensed Milk, pinch of salt, and 1 TBS of butter in a pan. Cook on medium – low stirring constantly. It will take anywhere from 10-20 minutes depending on the heat of your stove. The ingredients will mix together and become darker. The mixture will start to thicken (good!). Be sure to stir well if it starts to boil; it can burn on the bottom if not stirred. The mixture is done when you can clear a space on the bottom of the pan that takes 1-2 seconds to fill back in (like parting the Red Sea). Remove from heat and let cool. After it has cooled, take the remaining butter and butter up your hands and a spoon. This stuff is sticky! Scoop it out, roll it in a ball, and then roll it in the sprinkles.* Good eats! Store in the fridge and eat within two days. If the brigadeiros don’t hold their shape as balls (which has happened to us), cook them a little longer next time.
* Chocolate sprinkles are the traditional Brazilian finish. We’ve used shredded coconut (tastes like a Mounds Bar), and crushed cookies, too. Muito bom!