Sweet Farofa Recipe

sweet farofaA little while ago I received an e-mail from one of my favorite blogs (O caderno de receitas) with a recipe for sweet farofa. For anyone wanting to try a new farofa recipe this one is perfect. It goes really well with pork or turkey. If there is anything in the recipe that you do not like or don’t have at home, you can simply leave it out.

Enjoy this recipe!

Ingredients
80g bacon, cubed or chopped finely
Olive Oil
½ onion, grated or chopped finely
50g prunes, chopped
50g raisins
50g chopped brazil nuts
50g chopped walnuts
250g breadcrumbs or farinha de mandioca

Put some olive oil in a frying pan, add the bacon and fry on a low heat. When beginning to brown add the onion and continue to fry. When the onion begins to soften and brown, add the prunes, raisins, brazil nuts and walnuts, continue to fry, mixing regularly. Add the breadcrumbs or farinha de mandioca a little at a time, mixing well after each addition to make sure that everything is well incorporated. If the breadcrumbs or farinha de mandioca begin to get dry you can add some more olive oil (you want the flour to be humid, but not wet). Serve warm or at room temperature together with meat, rice and beans!

Thank you to ‘O caderno de receitas’ for this wonderful recipe!

Photo credit: http://ocadernodereceitas.com.br/2015/12/29/farofa-doce-da-minha-mae-sugestao-para-o-ano-novo/

Revisiting Manioc (yuca or cassava) Flours

Many of you will remember that a while back I did a post on what tapioca flour is (take a look HERE if you haven’t read this post yet) and tried to go into some detail about the different types of manioc flours that you can find in Brazil. I thought it was time to revisit these flours and to give a bit of a briefer explanation of the different types of flours and starches that you can find in Brazil.

I have found that many people get confused about the different manioc flours (myself included) and since gluten-free products are pretty popular at the moment, I thought it would be fitting to do another post on this topic. I hope that this is helpful and clears up any doubts people have!

What is Manioc, Cassava or Yuca?

imagesDepending on where you are from you may call this root manioc, yuca or cassava. Here in Brazil it is known either as mandioca or aipim, for simplicity’s sake I will use manioc here. Manioc is a starchy root that is native to South America, it is rich in carbohydrates, calcium and vitamin C. The manioc root is not meant to be eaten raw and in order to be consumed, must be properly cooked or processed.

To cook the manioc root, peel the brown outer skin and place in a pan of water, boil until the white flesh becomes soft. Once slightly cooled remove the woody inner center (this woody center looks like a thick piece of string).

The manioc root is the basis for the many different types of ‘mandioca flours‘ you can find in Brazil and is an important part of the Brazilian diet.

1. Farinha de Mandioca/Manioc Flour
images (1)Manioc flour, known as farinha de mandioca in Brazil, is a very coarse flour and is primarily used to make farofa, pirão, and tutu among many other dishes. There are many different types of manioc flour, all with varying degrees of coarseness. Since this flour is toasted you also find different toasts in the flour, the more toasted the more nutty the flavor. This flour is almost only used in savory dishes and, as far as I know, not at all in baking. You can buy it HERE on amazon.com.

2. Polvilho Azedo/Sour Starch
polvilho azedoThis flour is fermented and has a slightly sour taste. It is a little bit coarser than the tapioca flour (polivilho azedo). It is commonly used to make pão de queijo and when hydrated with water it is used to make tapioca pancakes. It is a great flour for savory recipes! You can buy it HERE on amazon.com.

3. Polvilho Doce/Tapioca Flour
Polvilho DoceThis is the regular tapioca flour that you can find relatively easily in the USA. This manioc starch is not fermented, is a little finer than the sour starch (polivilho azedo) and has a slightly sweeter flavor. It is commonly used in sweet recipes, but can be used in savory recipes and substituted for the sour starch (polivilho azedo). You can buy it HERE on amazon.com.

Goma de tapioca4. Goma de Tapioca/Hydrated Tapioca Flour
This is a hydrated tapioca flour used in making tapioca pancake from the north of Brazil. The hydrated starch is made by adding water to tapioca flour (or polivilho azedo or polvilho doce) and passing it through a sieve to remove the lumps. Take a look HERE to read more about the tapioca pancakes.

5. Tapioca Pearls
Tapioca Pearls
This is what everyone in the USA will know as tapioca and is used to make the traditional tapioca pudding, it is used in bubble tea and in Brazil it is used to make a pudding called sagú that is made with the tapioca pearls and red wine. Tapioca pearls can be found in different sizes from about 1mm to 8mm. You can purchase tapioca pearls at any supermarket. Here is a link to buy the SMALL PEARLS. And here is a link to buy the BIG PEARLS.

6. Coarse or Granulated Tapioca
Granulated Tapioca
This is a very coarse tapioca and is very irregular in size. It is used in both savory and sweet dishes and is usually soaked in milk before being cooked. I have used this a lot to make a simple cake; because the tapioca is somewhat gooey the texture of the cake is more like a hardened tapioca pudding (doesn’t sound too appetizing, but trust me, it is delicious)! You can buy it HERE on amazon.com.

Photo Credits:
http://www.products.mercola.com
http://www.kimage.com.br
http://www.cooksinfo.com
http://www.amazon.com
www.produto.mercadolivre.com.br
http://www.emporiograosdobrasil.com.br

Thanks to From Brazil to You for some great information about manioc http://www.frombraziltoyou.org/cassava-its-importance-derivatives-and-dishes/

 

Farofa

Receita de FarofaIf you travel to Brazil and you eat meat, the chances of being offered farofa are pretty high. But, as a part of the offer to try this dish will be a very kind ‘but I am not sure if you are going to like it.’ There is something about Brazilians when it comes to foreigners and farofa that they do not think these gringos (term used to refer to foreigners in Brazil) will like this manioc flour based side dish. When my husband first offered farofa to me he started with the very kind phrase ‘but I don’t think you are going to like it.’ Well, he was wrong with that one! And it seems that Brazilians are still surprised when they learn that this gringa LOVES to eat and make farofa.

Ok, so you are probably reading this and wondering ‘what the hell is this farofa dish.’ Farofa is a side dish commonly served with meat, rice, and beans and is almost always found at churrascos (barbecues). Farofa is made from farinha de mandioca which is a much courser and less starchy manioc flour than regular tapioca flour (see my post about the different types of manioc flours in Brazil). The farinha de mandioca is slightly yellow and can be found in many different varieties, from toasted to course to flakey (looks a little bit like corn flakes)! The type of farinha de manioca you use depends entirely on your taste buds; there is no right or wrong farinha de mandioca to use when making farofa.

So the base of farofa is a dry and course manioc flour. Because this flour is rather tasteless and not nice to eat on its own, Brazilians use butter, onions, bacon, parsley, eggs and almost anything else you can imagine to flavor this flour and make it in to a deliciously yummy side dish that is paired beautifully with meat.

The secret to a really tasty farofa is the butter. Lots of butter is melted in a frying pan, onions are added and are either lightly sautéd or sautéd until they are brown and crispy. Other ingredients are sautéd next. Lastly, making sure there is enough butter in the pan, the farinha de mandioca is added and mixed with all of the other ingredients. The butter is used to add moisture to the dry flour. The trick is to get just the right amount of butter so as not to make the farinha de mandioca too moist or too dry!

As with all Brazilian dishes everyone has their own recipe for farofa and swears by it. This is my favorite recipe and the one that I make the most. For a different farofa recipe take a look at this one from fellow blogger Sally.

Receita de FarofaIngredients

3/4 cup farinha de mandioca
2 – 4 tbsp butter
1/2 onion, thinly sliced
2 slices of bacon, finely chopped
1 handful of Cheiro verde or parsley

Melt the butter in a frying pan over medium heat. Add the onions and sauté until they are just beginning to brown. Add the bacon and fry for 3 – 4 minutes. Add the cheiro verde together with the farinha de mandioca. Keep over the heat for approximately 1 minute. Remove from the heat and place into a serving bowl. This can be served warm, cold, or room temperature.

Eat with meat (sausage is my favorite), rice, and beans.

For a PDF of this recipe CLICK HERE!

Comments: To make this recipe it is absolutely essential that you use farinha de mandioca. The fine tapioca flour that is used to make pão de queijo will not work. Finding the course manioc flour outside of Brazil is not all that easy. I have found it in the international section of some supermarkets in the USA, but not frequently. You can easily buy it online. Take a look here for links of where to buy it or this link will take you directly to the product! You have the option of buying ‘torrada’ or ‘cruda/crua’. The ‘torrada’ has a stronger more nutty flavor than the ‘cruda/crua’. My favorite brand for farinha de mandioca is Yoki!