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Brazilian Coconut Custards (Quindim)

Bright yellow Brazilian quindim custards

Quindim are a favorite dessert in Brazil, especially in Salvador de Bahia. They are vibrant yellow in color and have a signature shine that make for an enticing little treat. Their texture is cooling and creamy, perfect for the warm summer months. 

Like many of the beautiful dishes in Bahia, quindim are a blend of African and Portuguese traditions. Egg yolks feature heavily in many Portuguese desserts, while the coconut crust in these sweets is of African influence. 

What Does Quindim Mean in English?

The word quindim is also of African origin. It is derived from dikende, a word from the African Kikongo language that means, roughly, “to act like a young girl.”

While it is uncertain why that particular name was chosen for this dessert, we might assume that it has to do with the quindims’ sweetness. There is an old American nursery rhyme that suggests that girls are made of “sugar and spice and everything nice.” Perhaps there is something similar in the folklore of the Kikongo-speaking nations. 

Making Brazilian Quindim

Whatever the reason, one thing is certain: quindim are delicious. And what’s more, they require only a few ingredients and are quite simple to make. They are traditionally served in individual portions from a ramekin or small ring mold, similar mini flan. Occasionally, you will find them in a full-size cake called a quindão, which is offered in slices. 

The quindim get their vibrant yellow color from egg yolks, of which there are quite a few in this recipe. They also incorporate a good deal of sugar and a flavorful coconut crust. Like many custards, the ingredients are mixed together and baked in a bain marie. 

The bain-marie allows heat to be transferred to the custards slowly, letting them cook through before the crust forms and maintaining a creamy, non-grainy texture. It is a technique applied to many baked custards, like creme brulee. 

Quindim are naturally gluten free, and can also be amended to suit a keto diet (see notes below). 

Brazilian Quindim Recipe

Ingredients:

12 egg yolks, strained through a mesh sieve
1 ¼ cup sweetened coconut flakes
¾ cups coconut milk, unsweetened
1 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp real vanilla extract or almond extract

Directions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Grease a standard muffin tin, mini flan tin, or 12 ramekins with unsalted butter or nonstick spray. Add sugar in each container to coat and then a little extra in the bottoms.
  3. In a small bowl, combine the coconut flakes and coconut milk. Let stand while you proceed to the next step.
  4. Put the sieved egg yolks, vanilla extract, and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer. Beat on medium speed until the mixture is pale yellow and foamy in texture.
  5. Now add your coconut flakes and coconut milk and mix on low speed to combine.
  6. Pour mixture into prepared muffin tin, mini flan tin, or ramekins. Fill each to about ¾ full.
  7. Place your muffin tin or ramekin in a bain-marie. This is, essentially, a hot water bath. Find a large casserole that your tin or ramekins can fit inside and fill it with water about halfway up the custards.
  8. Bake the coconut custards in the bain marie for 30 minutes. Insert a toothpick or sharp knife in the center of one to check for doneness. If the custard is still liquid, bake for an additional ten minutes.
  9. Remove the quindim from the oven and let it cool. You can serve it directly from the ramekins, but it is better to invert them onto a plate to show off that glossy, sugary topping. Use a cookie sheet to flip your muffin or flan tins before transferring to individual plates.

Recipe Notes:

To make keto-friendly quindim, replace the sweetened coconut flakes with unsweetened shredded coconut. Substitute monk fruit sweetener for the granulated sugar, and you’ll be good to go! 

Other sweet Brazilian recipes to try:

Visit Texas de Brazil for Authentic Brazilian Cuisine

Stop by one of our 50+ locations to sample authentic Brazilian churrasco dishes, from spit-grilled picanha to our melt-in-your-mouth Brazilian cheese bread. Or, go online to our Butcher Shop to get our signature meats delivered right to your door. 

Brazilian Sweet Corn Pudding (Curau de Milho)

Corn Pudding from Brazil

Brazilian sweet corn pudding in red dish with cinnamon stick

The Festas Juninas are fast approaching, and no celebration would be complete without curau. Creamy, sweet, and refreshing, this corn pudding is both delicious and very simple to make. 

Like many festivals in Brazil, the Festas Juninas have their roots in Catholicism. Also known as the Festas de São João, the celebrations are meant to honor John the Baptist and thank him for the rainy season. The festas are likewise an homage to rural traditions and incorporate various costumes, food, and music. 

The Festas coincide with Brazil’s second harvest of sweet corn, so it is no surprise that corn-based dishes feature heavily during the celebrations. Popcorn, cornmeal cakes, and sweet corn pudding are especial favorites and pair beautifully with a warm glass of spiced quentao (Brazilian mulled wine). 

Corn in Brazil

Along with products like coffee, beef, rice, and sugar, corn is one of Brazil’s most important crops in terms of exports. In fact, after the US and China, it is the third largest producer of sweet corn in the world.

Most producers of corn, including the US, have one main crop per season. Brazil, however, is able to harvest three separate crops in different regions and at different times of the year. 

  • The first crop is planted in the Southern region of Brazil between September and October. It is harvested between February and May. This crop is the highest yielding of the three, producing about 100 bushels per acre on average. Once the corn of the first crop has been harvested, it is typically rotated with wheat. 
  • The second corn crop in Brazil is called safrinha, meaning “little harvest” in Portuguese. This is planted in the Midwest after the soybeans have been processed, usually between the months of January and April. It is harvested between June and August and constitutes Brazil’s largest crop in terms of exports, although overall yields are typically smaller than the first crop. 
  • The third Brazilian corn crop was not officially recognized until 2018. There is a smaller but appreciable yield in the North and Northeast region of the country, which is planted from April to September and harvested between October and December. 

Unsurprisingly, corn is a key ingredient in many traditional Brazilian dishes, from cornmeal cake at breakfast to savory pamonhas stuffed with sausage or beef. This corn pudding recipe also incorporates another favorite Brazilian ingredient: sweetened condensed milk

How to Make Brazilian Sweet Corn Pudding (Curau de Milho)

Ingredients:

12 oz fresh corn kernels* (about 8 medium-sized ears)
4 cups whole milk
1/4 cup sweetened condensed milk
1.5 tablespoons butter
¼ tsp salt
Ground cinnamon

Directions:

  1. Put the fresh corn kernels and whole milk in a blender and blend until well combined. 
  2. Pass the blended corn and milk mixture through a large sieve to remove any pulp.
  3. Heat a saucepan over medium high heat. Put your corn and milk mixture into the pot, along with your butter, condensed milk, and salt. 
  4. Cook over medium heat (stirring occasionally) until the mixture is thickened, with a creamy, pudding-like consistency. This should take 20-30 minutes.
  5. Pour the corn pudding into serving cups and chill for at least one hour.
  6. Dust with ground cinnamon before serving. 

Celebrate with Texas de Brazil

Bring the Festas Juninas right to your door with one of Texas de Brazil’s hand-curated butcher boxes. Our online Grill Packages feature premium cuts of picanha, pork chops, rack of lamb, spicy Brazilian sausage, and more. Upgrade your barbecue game and visit our Butcher Shop to see what we have available for your next cookout. 

Easy Picnic Food Ideas

Brazilian Chicken Salad (Salpicão de Frango)

Brazilian-style chicken salad over lettuce and topped with potato sticks

Brazilians love their mayonnaise, and it features heavily in a variety of dishes and dips. In the summer, salads made using mayo are an especial favorite at barbecues, potlucks, and picnics. They are cooling, but satisfying, and can be made well ahead of time. 

This chicken salad recipe is similar to American versions, but with a few classic Brazilian twists. Corn, shredded carrots, and raisins add sweetness and crunch, and green olives lend a tangy, earthy flavor. And, of course, we top it off with batata palha, the crispy potato sticks Brazilians adore and put on everything from hot dogs to rice. 

If you don’t have the potato sticks, you can get a similar effect by crumbling some ridged potato chips on top. The effect is crunchy, salty, and delicious. 

What is Salpicão in English?

The word salpicao is a Portuguese derivative of the Spanish word salpicon. A salpicon in Spain refers to any number of salad-like dishes combining meat, vegetables, and dressing. It translates most closely in English to a “medley.” 

A similar dish in the UK is referred to as “salmagundi,” a word that is also used in general to describe a medley or hodgepodge of things. 

Healthy Chicken Salad Options

Mayonnaise-based salads are not at the top of the list for diet friendly meals, but you can make a few simple tweaks to this recipe for a chicken salad that is actually quite healthy. For example, you can skip the potato sticks topping all together if you are looking for a healthier version. 

Another way to cut calories in chicken salad is to substitute half of the mayonnaise with nonfat Greek yogurt. (You can replace the mayo entirely with yogurt, but the dressing will not be as creamy.) 1 tablespoon of mayonnaise has a whopping 90 calories. By comparison, 1 tablespoon of nonfat Greek yogurt has about 10 calories, much less fat, and a considerable amount of protein. 

In addition, if you are planning to use your salpicao as a sandwich filling, you can use lettuce cups in place of bread. 

How to Make Brazilian Chicken Salad (Salpicao de Frango)

Makes about 8 servings

Ingredients:

For the Salad:
4  boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 6 oz each)
1 tablespoon of minced garlic
Half of one medium yellow onion, diced (about ¼ cup)
1 cup shredded carrots
1 cup sweet corn
½ cup raisins, brown or golden
¼ cup diced green onion
½ cup whole green olives
Brazilian potato sticks or crushed potato chips

For the Dressing:
½ cup of mayonnaise
2 tablespoons Extra Virgin olive oil
¼ cup apple cider vinegar
1.5 tablespoons Dijon mustard
Salt
Freshly ground black pepper

Directions:

  1. Preheat a large stock pot over medium-high heat. Add a drizzle of olive oil saute your chopped yellow onions until softened (2 minutes or so). Add in the garlic and cook until just fragrant, about 1 minute more.
  2. Place the chicken breasts in with the cooked garlic and onions. Cover with just enough water to fully submerge. 
  3. Add in 2 teaspoons of salt and bring to a boil.
  4. Once the water is boiling, reduce heat to a medium simmer and cook until chicken has reached an internal temperature of at least 165 degrees Fahrenheit (about 25 minutes). 
  5. When the chicken is cooked through, remove it and shred it on a plate using two forks. Discard the water in your stock pot. 
  6. While the chicken cools, prepare your dressing. Add mayonnaise, 2 tablespoons olive oil, dijon mustard, and apple cider vinegar to a large bowl and whisk together. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
  7. When chicken has cooled to room temperature, add it to the bowl with the dressing. Combine with your carrots, yellow corn, raisins, olives, and green onions and mix until all ingredients are evenly coated with the dressing. 
  8. Top with the batata palha or crushed potato chips.

Pair your chicken salad with a refreshing class of Brazilian lemonade and you have a simple but delicious summer meal. Enjoy!

Brazilian Caldo Verde Recipe (Green Soup)

How to Make Portuguese Green Soupbowl of caldo verde with spoon on table with orange tiles

Caldo verde (“green soup”) is a northern Portuguese dish that is also very popular in Brazil. It is a perfect Springtime dish, being lighter but still satisfying. It gets its name from one of its primary ingredients: collard greens. 

Like other dishes such as corn cakes, peanut toffee, and mulled wine, caldo verde is an especial favorite during the Festivas Juninas, also known as the Festas de São João. This Catholic summer festival honors John the Baptist and is also a celebration of Brazilian rural life.

The soup incorporates many flavors reminiscent of the American South: smoked sausage, collard greens, onions, and garlic. While a Southern soup might call for beans or rice, this recipe uses potatoes for a bit of starch. The potatoes act as a naturally thickener and give the soup a satisfying texture. 

We will be using smoked Brazilian sausage (also known as linguica calabresa), which has a lightly spiced and garlicky flavor. If you do not have smoked linguica, you can substitute with any smoked sausage. Chorizo and andouille are especially good, since they have a similar taste and texture to the linguica. 

You can further customize your soup however you like. Some recipes call for kale in place of collard greens, for example. You could omit the greens entirely, but then it wouldn’t really be a “caldo verde!” If you don’t care for collards or kale, try spinach, Swiss chard, or even bok choi. All have a mild, sweet flavor when they are stewed and lend to the heartiness of this soup.

Brazilian Caldo Verde Recipe (Green Soup)

Ingredients:

6 yellow potatoes, such as Yukon Gold
7 Texas de Brazil hickory smoked sausages, sliced
1 large yellow onion, diced
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 pound collard greens
2-3 tbsp olive oil
8 cups chicken or vegetable stock
Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Remove the stems from your collard greens and slice it into thin strips. You can do this by stacking a few leaves on top of each other, rolling them up, and then slicing them. This is called a “chiffonade.”
  2. Heat a large stock pot over medium heat. Add in 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil.
  3. Add the sausage and cook until evenly browned, about 5 minutes. Remove the sausage and allow it to drain on a plate lined with paper towels.
  4. Add another drizzle of olive oil to your pot. Put the onions in the pot and cook them until they are softened and translucent, about 2 minutes.
  5. Add the minced garlic and cook until just fragrant, about 1 minute.
  6. Add all the potatoes and cover with chicken or vegetable stock. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a medium simmer. Allow to cook until potatoes are fork tender (about 20-25 minutes).
  7. When the potatoes are cooked, remove half of them and set them aside with the sausages.
  8. Using an immersion blender, blend the remaining ingredients in the stock pot until they are smooth and fully incorporated.
  9. Now add the rest of the potatoes, smoked sausage, and collard greens to the pot. Let the greens simmer for a minute or two, until their color brightens and they are slightly softened.
  10. Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper as needed.

Serve piping hot with a little drizzle of olive oil and some red pepper flakes. Pair your caldo verde with crusty bread or pao de queijo for dipping. 

Visit Texas de Brazil for Your Next Night Out

Texas de Brazil has over 50 locations in the US and internationally. Visit your local restaurant for a truly unique and delicious dining experience. Or, bring the taste of churrasco right to your door with one of our beautifully curated grill packages. Go online to order premium lamb, pork, and sausages-and don’t forget to try our new spiced picanha.

Brazilian Fried Bananas With Cinnamon Sugar

Texas de Brazil Pan-Fried Cinnamon Bananas

fried bananas with cinnamon sugar glaze

Fried bananas are one of the more popular side items at Texas de Brazil, and for good reason. They have all the flavor and crispy indulgence of a churro, but the added creaminess of a perfectly ripe banana. A Brazilian fried banana coated with cinnamon sugar is so delicious, you’ll forget it’s relatively healthy, too!

Fried bananas are also ridiculously easy to make and require just four ingredients: butter, cinnamon, sugar and, of course, bananas.

How to Choose a Ripe Banana

For this recipe, you want bananas that are just ripe. They are easier to handle and the texture will soften up as you cook them. An over-ripe banana tends to go mushy when heated.

If you are going to be using your bananas right away, select bananas that have no traces of green on the peel. They should be a vibrant yellow with a few brown spots. Brown spots are different from bruises, which happen when the fruit has been dropped or handled too roughly. 

If you won’t be eating your bananas immediately, choose some with a little green on them. They will still ripen relatively quickly (1-2 days). You can further delay the ripening process by refrigerating the bananas. The peel will turn brown, but the fruit inside will be completely fine. Let the bananas come to room temperature before frying them. 

How to Speed Up Banana Ripening

If you change your mind and decide you need to make fried bananas immediately (it definitely happens), you can put your bananas in an open paper bag and leave it in a warm, dry area. Closing the bag will speed up the process even further. Bananas emit ethylene gas as a signal to ripen, and an enclosed space increases the gas’s concentration.

Can You Freeze Bananas?

Yes, whole bananas freeze very well. Freeze them with the skin on and they will keep for up to three months. Because the texture is somewhat softer and mushier with thawed bananas, these are often best suited to things like baked goods and smoothies. 

Brazilian Fried Bananas with Cinnamon Sugar

Ingredients:

4 tablespoons butter
¼ cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon
¼ tsp vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
4 ripe bananas 

Directions:

  1. Melt two tablespoons of butter in the microwave. Mix in ¼ tsp vanilla extract and a pinch of salt.
  2. Mix the cinnamon and sugar and put it on a large plate.
  3. Peel the bananas and brush each with the melted butter and vanilla mixture. Roll the bananas in the cinnamon sugar mixture.
  4. Melt the remaining butter in a skillet over medium-high heat.
  5. Add bananas and fry on each side until caramelized on all sides. Sprinkle with additional cinnamon sugar, if desired, and serve warm.

What to Eat with Fried Bananas

These cinnamon sugar bananas are perfectly delicious all on their own. However, they also make an exceptionally indulgent topping for ice cream sundaes and other desserts. If you’re in the neighborhood of one of Texas de Brazil’s 50+ locations, stop by and try pairing the fried bananas with one of our Brazilian papaya cream desserts. 

Easy Yuca Fries Recipe (Aipim Frito)

Make Aipim Frito at Home

fried cassava root with dipping sauce

Yuca is a shrubby plant known more commonly in Brazil as manioc or cassava. It is harvested for its starchy root, which is eaten as-is or processed to form tapioca/manioc flour. After rice and maize, yuca is the largest source of carbohydrates in the Tropics. 

History of Yuca Cultivation

fresh cassava root with ends trimmed
Cassava roots are a major source of carbohydrates in South America, Meso America, Africa, the Caribbean, and parts of Asia.

The cultivation of yuca likely goes back many thousands of years, although hard evidence of its domestication dates to only about 1400 years ago. Proof of its importance as a crop during this time was found at a Mayan site called Joya de Ceren in El Salvador. 

At this point, it seems it was a major food source for both Southern Mesoamerica and northern South America. There is also evidence to support its use in the diet of the Taino people of the Caribbean (yuca is, in fact, a Taino word). 

By the late 15th century, cassava was being produced in high yields due to its drought resistance and advances in agriculture, namely crop rotation. European colonists initially rejected the use of cassava and meal produced from it, believing it to be bad for their health. 

When the Spanish and Portuguese were unable to successfully cultivate wheat in the tropical climate, however, cassava became an acceptable substitute. It was introduced to their other colonies in Asia and Africa, where it remains an important crop to this day.

Yuca vs Yucca

Yuca, with one “c,”  is the shrub in the spurge family whose root is used as a foodstuff. “Yucca” is an entirely different plant, although it is still a shrub. It is a member of the asparagus family and native to hot areas of the Americas and the Caribbean. 

It is thought that the similarity in names of the two distinct species arose from Carl Linnaeus, the famed Swedish botanist, who accidentally named the “yucca” plant after the Taino word for cassava (“yuca”).

Like cassava, yucca is edible. However, it is the flowers and stems, not the root, that are eaten. Overall, yucca is predominantly used in landscaping for its dramatic appearance and large size. 

How is Cassava Used?

Yuca, aka cassava, can be used in a variety of ways. The starchy root can be used fresh, dried, or powdered. All versions of cassava feature heavily in Brazilian cuisine. It is a primary ingredient in pao de queijo (Brazilian cheese bread) and is frequently employed as a crispy, toasted topping (farofa). 

Fried cassava is also popular as a street food in Brazil, where it is known as aipim frito. These yuca fries are every bit as delicious as potato fries, and they are very simple to make. They are a satisfying snack or a great accompaniment to any meal, especially churrasco. 

Can I Make Yuca Fries in the Oven?

Yes, yuca crisps up beautifully when baked. If you prefer to make your aipim frito in the oven, simply preheat your oven to 425 degrees fahrenheit, toss in oil and a little salt, and cook until golden (about 25 minutes). You may want to flip them halfway to avoid one side getting too dark. 

Yuca Fries Recipe (Aipim Frito)

Ingredients:

3 lbs fresh yuca
3 cups vegetable oil
Salt to taste

Directions:

  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. 
  2. Peel the skin from the yuca roots and trim off each end. 
  3. Cut the peeled yuca into 3 inch rounds.
  4. Place yuca rounds in the boiling water and cook until fork tender, about 30 minutes. 
  5. When the yuca is tender, drain the rounds and let them cool until you can touch them. 
  6. Cut out the hard, center root of each yuca round, then trim the remaining yuca into sticks. 
  7. Make sure the yuca sticks are nice and dry. You can pat them dry with paper towels.
  8. Heat oil in a large skillet or cast iron pan over medium high. Caution: oil should not be smoking, just hot enough to sizzle when frying. 
  9. Fry your yuca sticks in batches until crisp and golden brown. Drain on paper towels and season with a little more salt. 
  10. Enjoy with your choice of condiments (try this creamy garlic sauce!)

What to Eat With Yuca Fries

Fried yuca goes well with almost anything. It is crispy and salty on the outside, creamy and lightly sweet on the inside. We suggest pairing it with your favorite churrasco dish, like smoked sausages or flame-roasted picanha. 

You can now cook your own churrasco meals at home with one of Texas de Brazil’s premium grill packages. Curated boxes with prime cuts of meat are delivered right to your door. Visit our site to see what we have available.  

 

Condensed Milk Desserts in Brazil

3 Simple Sweet Tooth Recipes Using Condensed Milk

Brazilians love their desserts, and the variety and sheer number of treats to be found can be as overwhelming and dazzling as Rio’s Carnival. Despite the variety of desserts, however, there is one, single ingredient that tends to appear more than most: condensed milk. 

It is easy to understand why condensed milk features so heavily in Brazilian desserts. On its own, it is sweet and silky. Paired with other ingredients, it lends a smooth, fudgy texture to a bite sized treat. It is also inexpensive and does not need to be refrigerated. 

The following are five easy recipes you can make at home using condensed milk and a few other simple ingredients. All can be made ahead of time and frozen for added convenience.

Brigadeiros Recipe

Brazilian chocolate ball desserts in paper cups
Brigadeiros (served in little paper cups) are popular at children’s parties.

 

Brigadeiros are one of Brazil’s most favorite sweet treats.They are named after Brigadier General Eduardo Gomes, a Brazilian political leader during the 1940s. This recipe was practical at the time, since it did not contain any wartime rationed ingredients like eggs or milk.

Today, it is an especially favorite at children’s parties. 

Ingredients:

1 can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk
3 tablespoons Dutch cocoa powder
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1/2 cup chocolate sprinkles
Pinch of salt
Paper candy cups

Instructions:

  1. Grease a casserole dish or other non-stick baking dish
  2. Heat your condensed milk, butter, and cocoa powder in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir until butter is melted and the mixture is slightly thickened (10-15 minutes). 
  3. Add a pinch of salt and stir.
  4. Pour the mixture into the greased baking dish.
  5. Refrigerate for one hour.
  6. Pour your sprinkles onto a large plate for easy coating.
  7. Using a small, 1.57” ice cream scoop or melon baller, scoop out the hardened mixture and roll each scoop into a smooth ball with your hands. 
  8. Toss each ball into the dish with chocolate sprinkles until they are evenly coated.
  9. Put each ball into a candy cup and refrigerate until ready to serve. 

Rabanada Recipe (Brazilian French Toast)

fried Brazilian french toast slices with cinnamon sugar
Rabanadas are Brazil’s version of French toast.

 

In America, French toast is traditionally made with milk and eggs and eaten with syrup for breakfast. In Brazil, a similar version is made but with condensed milk and lots of cinnamon sugar. It is eaten for dessert or an afternoon snack, instead of as a morning meal. 

Ingredients:

1 loaf of bread (preferably stale)
6 oz sweetened condensed milk
3 eggs, room temperature
½ tsp cinnamon
¼ cup granulated sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
¼ tsp salt
Vegetable oil

Directions:

  1. Slice bread into 1-inch slices.
  2. In a small bowl, mix together eggs, condensed milk, vanilla extract, and salt.
  3. Soak each piece of bread on both sides and transfer to a baking dish. 
  4. Pour any unused mixture over the slices. Cover with cling film and refrigerate for 3 hours or up to overnight.
  5. When the bread has soaked up all the mixture, preheat a skillet for medium heat. 
  6. Mix your cinnamon and sugar and put it on a large plate. 
  7. Add vegetable oil to the skillet.
  8. Remove a slice of soaked bread from the egg mixture and drain off any excess. Fry in oil for 2-3 minutes per side, until cooked through and golden brown. 
  9. Immediately after frying, coat each slice in the cinnamon sugar mixture and transfer to a paper towel lined plate or cooling rack. 

Cajuzinho Recipe (Brazilian Cashew Bites)

Brazilian peanut candy bites rolled in sugar
Cajuzinhos are like a peanut variation of the Brigadeiro.

 

Like Brigadeiros, these bite-sized treats are popular at children’s birthday parties. The name translates to “little cashew,” since they were originally made using ground cashews. Today, however, they are more commonly made with peanuts. 

This recipe is very similar to Brigadeiros, but incorporates crushed peanuts and a sugar coating rather than sprinkles.

Ingredients:

1 can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk
1 tablespoon Dutch cocoa powder
3 tablespoons ground, roasted peanuts (unsalted)
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
Granulated sugar
Pinch of salt
Paper candy cups

Directions:

  1. Grease a baking dish or glass bowl. 
  2. Heat condensed milk, butter, cocoa powder, salt, and ground peanuts in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir until thickened (10-15 minutes).
  3. Pour mixture into the glass dish or bowl.
  4. Refrigerate for one hour, or until hardened. 
  5. Scoop out bite sized-amounts with a spoon or ice cream scoop and roll into balls. Coat in granulated sugar and put in candy cups.
  6. Garnish with a whole roasted peanut. 
  7. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Main Course is Covered at Texas de Brazil

Plan a truly unforgettable party by pairing one of these sweet Brazilian recipes with a traditional churrasco dinner. You can now prepare authentic dishes at home with one of Texas de Brazil’s grill packages. From a la carte options to hand-curated boxes, you can enjoy the premium flavors of Brazil delivered right to your home. Go online today to order yours and get ready for barbecue season. 

Creamy Brazilian Garlic Dipping Sauce

Molho de Alho for Churrasco

creamy white sauce in white bowl with spoon

Molho de Alho is a favorite Brazilian garlic dipping sauce served alongside meats and occasionally on top of bread. It is especially delicious on grilled chicken or churrasco-style picanha. It is essentially a roux sauce that is thickened even further with mayonnaise and seasoned with herbs and plenty of garlic.

This recipe is for the basic sauce, but it can easily be customized to suit your tastes. Some common variations might include lemon zest for a little tang, or smoked paprika for some heat. The choices are really endless, so have fun experimenting.

While Brazilians typically use this as a dipping sauce, it would work well as a white sauce for flatbread or pizza, or even as a garlicky sauce for pasta. 

Dietary Adjustments for Molho de Alho

If you are dairy-free, you can still make this recipe. There are vegan options for milk, mayonnaise, and butter, all of which will work just as well. For a gluten-free version, substitute the wheat flour with tapioca flour, which is actually used quite a bit in Brazilian cuisine (like in this delicious Brazilian cheese bread).

Creamy Brazilian Garlic Dipping Sauce (Molho de Alho)

Makes 1.5 cups

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

2 tablespoons all purpose flour

4 large cloves of garlic, minced

1 cup of milk (can be any percentage of milk fat)

½ cup mayonnaise

¾ tsp salt

Freshly ground black pepper

½ tsp dried oregano

Directions:

  1. Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. When it is melted, add the minced garlic and cook just until softened and fragrant (1-2 minutes)
  2. Add in your flour and mix to form a roux paste. Cook for a minute or two until the paste takes on a light golden color.
  3. Slowly whisk in your milk until fully combined with the flour mixture. Let the sauce thicken a little over two minutes.
  4. Add in your mayo, oregano, salt, and pepper. Cook for an additional 1-2 minutes over medium heat.

If you want to make this sauce ahead of time or need to store leftovers, it will keep in the fridge for up to one week. 

Enjoy Texas de Brazil Churrasco at Home

How about some picanha to go with your garlic sauce? You can enjoy churrasco at home with one of Texas de Brazil’s premium grill packages. Each box is carefully curated with the highest quality cuts of meat and delivered conveniently to your door. With seven different boxes and price points to choose from, you’ll be sure to find a perfect option for your next dinner at home. 

Recipe for Gourmet Brazilian Pasta Salad

Brazilian Macarronese With Bacon and Dijon Dressing

fusilli pasta salad in white bowl

If Brazil and the American Midwest had a baby, it might be this fusilli pasta salad. Loaded with delicious and comforting ingredients, macarronese is a staple side dish that Brazilians like to bring to churrascos (cookouts) or potlucks. 

The word “macarronese” is an amalgam of the Portuguese words for pasta (macarrao) and mayonnaise (maionese). There are plenty of both in this recipe, so it is a fair description. Traditional recipes also include diced ham, shredded carrots, peas, olives, corn, and onions. 

The wonderful thing about pasta salad is that you can customize it with virtually any ingredient. Our version incorporates many of the traditional favorites, but we have substituted the diced ham with crispy, crumbly bacon and replaced the diced onion with fresh chives. The addition of tart and sweet cherry tomatoes gives another depth of flavor. 

It wouldn’t be macarronese with mayo, but we have reduced the amount slightly and cut it with a dressing made from shallots, olive oil, lemon juice and dijon mustard. 

In America, we typically use macaroni for pasta salad, which you can certainly use in this recipe. We do find, however, that the twists and turns of fusilli allow for a more generous coating and absorption of the flavors. 

Gourmet Brazilian Pasta Salad (Macarronese with Bacon and Dijon Dressing)

Ingredients:

1 lb (16 oz) packaged fusilli noodles

1 cup shredded carrots

1 cup peas, frozen or fresh

12 slices of thick cut bacon

1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved

3 tablespoons fresh chives, diced

1 shallot, minced

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

1 tablespoon lemon juice

2 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil

¾ cup mayonnaise

 

Directions: 

  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Add your pasta and cook according to package instructions. Drain and put pasta in a large, heat-safe bowl.
  2. While the pasta is still warm, add your halved cherry tomatoes, shredded carrots, and peas. The residual heat will soften the ingredients and cook them a little. 
  3. Cook the bacon until crisp. Crumble into bite-sized pieces and set aside on paper towels to drain. 
  4. In the same pan you used to cook the bacon, reserve 1 tsp or so of the drippings and discard the rest. Add 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil and cook your minced shallots until soft and translucent. 
  5. Add the oil and cooked shallots to a small mixing bowl. Whisk in the lemon juice, one more tablespoon of olive oil, and the dijon mustard. 
  6. Pour your dressing over the fusili pasta and vegetables and mix to coat. 
  7. Let the noodles cool to room temperature, then add your bacon, mayonnaise, and fresh chives. Season with plenty of freshly ground black pepper. Mix thoroughly.  

Serve at room temperature or chilled. 

What to Serve with Brazilian Pasta Salad?

This is a filling side dish that Brazilians like to serve at churrascos, or barbecues. Brazilian barbecues tend not to feature full plates of hamburgers and hot dogs in buns. Rather, thin cuts of meat are served as they are ready and sliced onto guests plates. 

One of Brazil’s favorite cuts of meat is picanha. It cooks beautifully over a charcoal or gas grill and, seasoned simply with rock salt, is a perfect accompaniment to your pasta salad. You can find picanha at most specialty butchers or order it online at Texas de Brazil’s Butcher Shop. 

 

Sausage Stuffed Brazilian Cheese Bread

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Brazilian cheese bread in a bowl with cup of black coffee

Cheese bread in Brazil is a national dish that can be found in almost any bakery. More of a puff than a roll, the pao de queijo is similar in flavor and texture to the French gougère. 

While pao de queijo is traditionally eaten at breakfast with a cup of coffee, it can be enjoyed any time of day. Street vendors and bakeries often sell variations on the traditional recipe, offering cheese breads stuffed with fruit, vegetables, and meat.

In its purest form, Brazilian cheese bread is a bite-sized, crispy, chewy, gooey piece of Heaven. It is all-too easy to eat six or seven without batting an eye. Luckily, pão de queijo is relatively simple to make at home, so you don’t have to worry about running out. 

Brazilian cheese bread requires only a few ingredients, the most unusual of which in America is the cassava flour. However, this is readily found in most grocery stores. Another version you may be more familiar with is “tapioca flour.” Both tapioca and cassava flour come from the cassava root. The main difference is that tapioca has a slightly higher starch content, which makes it a superior thickener. 

This version adds a savory stuffing made from Brazilian sausage, or linguiça. Linguiças are made from minced pork and calabrese peppers, giving them a unique, zesty flavor that perfectly compliments the sweet, mild taste of the cheese. The taste is something akin to sausage rolls, but more delicate.

Brazilian sausage is available raw or smoked. We are using the smoked version in this recipe, since it adds another depth of flavor and makes it that much easier, since we won’t need to cook and drain the sausage. 

Sausage Stuffed Brazilian Cheese Bread

Ingredients:

16 oz tapioca or cassava flour
8 oz whole milk
2 oz vegetable oil
1 ½ cups grated parmesan cheese
2 eggs
1.5-2 tsp salt
½ pound smoked Brazilian sausage

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Chop your smoked sausage so it is roughly minced. 
  3. Put milk, oil, and salt into a small saucepan and bring to a boil.
  4. Once the milk mixture has come to a boil, put it in a stand mixer along with the tapioca flour. Mix on medium speed until everything is evenly incorporated. At this point, the batter will be sticky and have some lumps.
  5. Let the dough cool for five minutes, then add the eggs one at a time on medium speed. The dough will look a little smoother now.
  6. Once the eggs are mixed in, add your cheese and minced Brazilian sausage and mix just to combine.
  7. Shape the dough into 2” balls and put them a few inches apart on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. A 2” ice cream scoop makes measuring very easy. Also, if you find the dough is sticking to your hands, wet them with a little cold water or use some vegetable oil.
  8. Bake the stuffed cheese puffs in the oven until they are lightly golden, which takes about 30 minutes. Enjoy fresh from the oven. 

Freezer tip: these snacks are very convenient to have on-hand for family get togethers or Game Day. Make the dough balls ahead of time and allow them to freeze on a cookie sheet. Then put the frozen cheese bread in a freezer safe bag. When you are ready to eat, cook them just the same as you would fresh. They will keep for up to three months. 

Try Brazilian Sausage and Pao de Queijo at Texas de Brazil

Let us do the cooking for you! Visit one of our 50+ locations to try delicious, authentic Brazilian cuisine. Our cheese bread is a customer favorite, and our own brand of Brazilian sausages have a light, sweet heat you won’t find anywhere else. Book your table today or go online to our Butcher Shop to have some of our best cuts of meat, including our smoked sausages, delivered right to your door. 

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