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Feijoada ... it's Brazil's party dish.

Feijoada . . . it's Brazil's party dish

From humble beginnings as a meal made by Brazilian slaves, feijoada (fay-zhwahdah) has evolved into a party food popular throughout Brazil. In this country, too, the stew of meats and black beans, with colorful accompaniments, makes appealing party fare.

Smoked meats simmer with beans to bring out rich flavors. You serve elements separately, with traditional side dishes: rice, kale, orange slices, chili salsa, and a crisp-soft topping called farofa--toasted dry manioc with onions and bananas.

For dessert, offer Brazil's intense, rich coconut custard, quindin, with pineapple. You'll find manioc (also called cassava) in markets catering to Brazilians and Africans (who call it gari). Or use farina instead; it's available in supermarkets with other hot breakfast cereals.

A chunk of carne seca (air-dried beef), sold here in Brazilian markets and gourmet food stores, adds authenticity, but harder, thinner beef jerky will do.

Feijoada preparation is most easily done over two days. A day or two ahead, cook beans and meat, make farofa and the custard, and wash kale. On party day, make salsa, chop and cook kale, cook rice, slice oranges, and reheat meat, beans, and farofa.

Brazilian Feijoada

1 small (about 2 1/2 lb.) smoked or corned beef tongue

1/2 pound Brazilian carne seca (dried beef) or beef jerky


1 1/2 pounds (3 1/2 cups) dry black beans, sorted of debris and rinsed

5 pounds lean beef short ribs (fat trimmed), sawed into 2-inch lengths

1/2 pound each beef link sausage, Polish sausage (kielbasa), and linguisa (Portuguese-style sausage)

1/8 pound Canadian bacon (optional), cut into 1/2-inch cubes

8 cloves garlic, minced or pressed

2 bay leaves

2 large onions, chopped

2 tablespoons salad oil

1/3 cup minced parsley

Fresh salsa (recipe follows)

Brown rice (recipe follows)

Farofa (recipe follows)

Wilted kale (recipe follows)

Sliced oranges (directions follow)

Place tongue and carne seca in a 10- to 12-quart pan. Cover with cold water, then bring to a boil over high heat. Drain and repeat. To meats in pan, add beans, 4 1/2 quarts water, and ribs. Bring to a boil over high heat, then cover and simmer until tongue is very tender when pierced, about 2 3/4 hours. Add beef, Polish, and linguisa sausages and Canadian bacon; simmer until sausages are hot in center (cut to test), about 10 minutes longer. Skim fat off liquid and discard.

Lift out sausages and cut into 1-inch chunks; arrange on a large ovenproof platter. Lift out carne seca; cut into 1-inch pieces and place next to sausages. Lift out tongue. Cut off and discard skin, then cut meat into 1-inch chunks. Lift out ribs; arrange on platter with other meats. Cover tightly and keep warm in a 150| oven. (If made ahead, let cool completely, then cover and chill up to 2 days; reheat, covered, in a 350| oven until meat is hot to touch, about 30 minutes.)

Ladle 2 quarts broth from pan (there will still be broth on beans); reserve 1/4 cup for salsa. Save balance of 2 quarts for other uses. With a slotted spoon, lift 1 1/2 cups beans from pan; set aside.

In a 10- to 12-inch frying pan over medium-high heat, cook garlic, bay leaves, and onions in oil until onions are limp, about 10 minutes; stir often. Add parsley and reserved beans; mash beans with the back of a spoon. Stir until mixture bubbles. Return bean mixture to large pan. (If made ahead, let cool, cover, and chill up to 2 days.) Bring bean mixture to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring.

Pour bean mixture into a bowl. Arrange salsa, rice, farofa, kale, and oranges in separate dishes. To serve, spoon meats, rice, farofa, kale, and oranges onto plates. Ladle beans over meat; add salsa to taste. Makes 12 to 14 servings.--Gisela Claper.

Fresh salsa. Core and dice 1/2 pound firmripe tomatoes. Combine in a bowl with the 1/4 cup reserved bean broth; 1 small, minced onion; 1 can (4 oz.) diced green chilies; 2 tablespoons minced parsley; 1 tablespoon each lemon juice and white wine vinegar; and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.

Brown rice. In a 3- to 4-quart pan, bring 4 1/2 cups water and 1 teaspoon salt (optional) to a boil over high heat. Add 2 cups long-grain brown rice, cover, and simmer until rice is tender to bite, about 40 minutes.

Farofa. In a 12- to 14-inch frying pan over medium-high heat, stir 1 large chopped onion with 3 tablespoons butter or margarine until limp, about 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, mash 2 medium-size ripe bananas until fairly smooth. Add 1 large egg; mix until blended.

To onion, add 1 pound (2 1/2 cups) manioc flour (also called cassava or gari) or farina. Stir often until manioc is golden, about 20 minutes. Add egg mixture and stir to coat. Serve warm. If made ahead, cool, cover, and chill up to 2 days. To reheat, place in a shallow 2 1/2-quart baking dish, cover, and bake in a 350| oven until hot in center about 35 minutes.

Wilted kale. Cut stems from 2 1/2 pounds kale and discard. Wash leaves and chop. Place in a 5- to 6-quart pan with 2 cups water. Bring to a boil over high heat; stir often until leaves wilt, 3 to 5 minutes.

Sliced oranges. With a knife, cut peel and membrane from 5 medium-size oranges. Slice fruit crosswise 1/4 inch thick.

Brazilian Coconut Custard

2 large eggs

10 large egg yolks

2 cups sugar


1/4 cup (1/8 lb.) butter or margarine, cut into 1-inch pieces

1 1/4 cups sweetened shredded coconut

1 small pineapple (about 3 lb.), peeled, cored, cut into wedges

Place eggs, yolks, sugar, 1 1/2 cups cold water, and butter in a blender or food processor; whirl until well combined. Add coconut; whirl just to mix.

Set a 5- to 6-cup ring mold in a larger rimmed baking pan (at least 2 in. deep). Pour egg mixture into ring mold. Place both pans in a 350| oven. Fill bottom pan with boiling water halfway up sides of mold. Bake until custard jiggles only slightly when gently shaken, about 50 minutes.

Lift mold from water and place on a rack; let cool completely. Invert a plate on top of mold; hold plate and mold together and invert custard onto plate. Lift off mold. Serve, or cover and chill up to 2 days. Cut into wedges; accompany with pineapple. Makes 12 to 14 servings.

Photo: Brazilian buffet party for 12 includes, front to back: cooked meats (short ribs, tongue, sausages) with brown rice, kale, fresh salsa, farofa (a maniocbanana topping), a bowl of black beans, and orange slices

Photo: Fresh pineapple and ring of Brazilian coconut custard make a tart-sweet conclusion to the dinner
COPYRIGHT 1987 Sunset Publishing Corp.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1987 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Date:Oct 1, 1987
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