The Olympics are here - can you feel the excitement? We can! We're all about the spirit of the games and we love watching and celebrating, especially while digging into some delicious Brazilian food. From pao de quiejo to churrasco to brigadeiros, we're whipping up an Olympic spread worthy of a gold medal. Click on for some of our fave recipes!
Though polenta, a corn meal based dish that can be served as a porridge, grilled, or baked, is Italian, fried polenta is an uber popular side in the Southern and Southeastern regions of Brazil (where there are large Italian communities). Turn it into a fun opening ceremonies party appetizer with these fried polenta stars topped with sweet cherry tomatoes, creamy tangy goat cheese, and summer basil.
Don’t let the caramelization fool you: these sweet Caramelized Bananas make for the perfect side dish to enjoy alongside any Brazilian-inspired lunch or dinner. The balance of sweet and salty is crucial to Southern Brazilian cuisine, and these caramelized bananas help prepare and enliven the palate throughout the meal.
Churrasco might be the national dish of Brazil and you definitely can't watch the Olympics without enjoying some bbq. The tradition of grilling meats goes back to when Europeans began to colonize southern Brazil and now churrascarias are wildly popular in the country and in the U.S. This churrasco is made with pork loin marinated in beer and spices and covered in salty Parmesan cheese. It's a family meal, so invite the whole team over to enjoy.
Pão de Queijo is a popular Brazilian snack food, served day and night, that originated in the state of Minas Gerais. This cheese-filled bread is made with tapioca flour, giving it the classic chewy texture (and making it gluten-free!). Wonderful at room temperature or straight out of the oven, have some with your afternoon cafe and think of Brazil.
A quick, contemporary salad inspired by one of Brazil's most traditional and famous dishes, feijoada (a rich black bean stew featuring various cuts of pork, which originated with the slaves in Brazil). This salad can either be served warm or chilled, as a side dish or main dish.
Vatapa is a beloved Brazilian stew usually made with shrimp, fish fillets, and coconut milk. Though emblematic of the Bahia regions, similar vatapa recipes were first found in West Africa. American iterations evolved to include ingredients from Brazil, but the dish retained its original Yoruba name, which translates to "spicy seafood paste." It's hearty and comforting but still light enough for summer nights.
This recipe (a cured meat served with grilled cheese) is a staple dish in the state of Pernambuco in Northeastern Brazil. It's a nod to the olden days, when meat was preserved with salt and sun rays. And as is tradition, the tender meat is served with grilled cheese (typically rennet cheese called coalho). It's an elegant dish - save it for the closing ceremonies.
A classic Brazilian burger, X-Tudo (which means "cheese everything" in Portuguese) is a cheesy, melty burger best enjoyed with both hands. Outrageously tall, dripping with cheese, and piled high with as many toppings as you can handle (ham, bacon, onions, and more!), it’s a classic in restaurants across the country.
Brigadeiros are Brazilian truffles - made with sweetened condensed milk and cocoa powder. They're found in every bakery, every restaurant, and every cafe and they should be in your kitchen. They're easy to make, easy to flavor, and are a delightful end to any meal. Here, they're infused with a golden ale beer. Roll them in sprinkles of your home country or the colors of the Olympic rings, throw them in cellophane bags, and they make great presents!
Brigadeiros are a Brazilian classic but why not try something new? In this dessert, they're turned into a molten cake. The brigadeiro batter is mixed but not formed into the traditional truffle, instead it's incorporated into a chocolate cake batter and it's all baked until barely set. That means a soft and pillowy cake encasing a melted fudge center.