The Olympics are underway.
Whilst they are unlikely to match London 2012, it’s something we are really looking forward to in the SK kitchen, even if it will mean getting up in the early hours to watch many of our sportsmen and women going for gold.
Not that we need an excuse to talk about food, but fact the Olympics are being held in Brazil gives us the perfect opportunity to look at what people attending the games are likely to eat and what you could make at home also.
Aside from Argentinian steak (but let’s face it, steak is steak), South American food is not something that has properly arrived on these shores yet, unless you live in London of course, and we think most people would struggle to name more than a few dishes from Brazil, but you would be surprised at how nice the food is and how easy it is to make.
Here are just some of our favourite dishes:
Coxinhas – These are effectively chicken and cheese fried balls and are perfect as a snack.
Pao de Queijo – Baked bread cheese rolls (yes, you have probably guessed it the Brazilians love their cheese!).
Moqueca de Camarao – This is an amazing prawn stew cooked in coconut milk with lots of vegetables added.
Feijoada – The national dish is another stew (yes the Brazilians love their stews!), this time made with black beans and various types of beef and sausage.
Brigadeiro – The Brazilians love their puddings and what’s not to like about a chocolate truffle made with condenses milk and covered in chocolate sprinkles. We can’t see Mo Farah eating this before a race though!
Mousse de Maracuja – A passion fruit mousse may not be massively original but think about how nice this will be given the passion fruits will not have to travel thousands of miles to reach your plate!
Bolinho de Chuva – Fried doughnuts sprinkled with sugar and cinnamon, enough said!
We are sure this will have whetted your appetite for Brazilian food and there is, of course, so much more to discover. So, when you are watching Team GB in action in the Olympics over the next three weeks, why don’t you try one or don’t forget to wash it down with the national drink – a Caipirinha.
Here’s our recipe for Feijoda:
1 pound (450 grams) dry black beans
4 tbsp olive oil
1-pound (450 grams) pork shoulder, cut into chunks
2 large onions, sliced
1 head of garlic, peeled and chopped
1 pound (450 grams) corned beef, cut into chunks
1/2 pound (225 grams) fresh sausages, such as chorizo or Italian sausage
1 pound (450 grams) smoked sausage,
1 smoked ham hock or shank
3-4 bay leaves
1 can of chopped tomatoes
1 Pour boiling water over the black beans and let them sit while you prepare the rest of the stew.
2 Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat and brown the pork shoulder. When it has browned, remove the meat from the pot, set aside and add the onions to the pot. Brown them, stirring occasionally, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pot. Sprinkle a little salt over the onions and add the garlic. Stir well and sauté 2 more minutes.
3 Add back the pork shoulder, and the other meats and add enough water to cover. Add the bay leaves, cover and bring to a simmer. Cook gently for 1 hour. Drain the black beans from their soaking liquid and add them to the stew. Simmer gently, covered, until the beans are tender, about an hour and a half.
4 Add the tomatoes, stir well and taste for salt, adding if it’s needed. Simmer this, uncovered, until the meat begins to fall off the ham hock, which will probably take 2-3 hours.
Serve with white rice.