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Articles - Gourmet Pleasures:

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Brazilian food is exciting and varied

Brazilian cuisine is as distinctive as the Sugarloaf mountain, one of the world’s great natural landmarks. Brazil is a big country and its cuisine is correspondingly rich and varied. Sao Paulo, for instance is famous for its pizzas, while in Bahia you’ll notice the African influences – they cook with palm oil, coconut milk, prawns and mussels, cooking banana and spices like pepper and fresh coriander. On the Atlantic coast, by contrast, they like stockfish, shrimps and mussels.

Feijoada is the national dish

The national dish, feijoada, is a spicy bean stew and it’s relatively simple to make. Soak black beans (one of the basic foodstuffs in Brazil) overnight in a lot of water. Next day, cook them for one to two hours with sausages and different sorts of meat. Season with salt, pepper, garlic. paprika and curry. Serve with rice, roasted manioc flour and slices of orange.

Churrasco and empanadas

Churrasco is another widely known Brazilian dish – cubes of beef and other kinds of meat are threaded onto a shashlik stick, grilled over an open fire and then served with a vinaigrette sauce with chopped tomatoes and onions. Then there are empanadas, delicious pasties filled with spiced mince. If you’re dishing up an entire Brazilian meal, you could make a coconut pudding or banana cakes with cashew nuts.

Brazilians love coffee and beer

Brazilians drink coffee at any time of the day or night. Cafesinho is strong, sweet coffee reminiscent of espresso. Beer is popular too and it’s usually a tropical light beer served chilled. Caipirinha is Brazil’s national cocktail. To make it you need some unwaxed limes which you cut into quarters, sprinkle with brown sugar and crush, fill the glass with crushed ice and pour in cachaça (distilled spirit made from sugar cane juice). For an alcohol-free version use ginger ale instead of cachaça.


Source: Heike Kreutz, www.aid.de