Brazilian Feast Part III: Recommendations

brazilian feast 1

I’m calling this “Recommendations” because I don’t think you’ll need a recipe.  Just recommendations for the salad, collard greens, mango, and goiabada “substitute”.

The salad is super simple and surprisingly delicious.  Just thinly slice a cucumber, tomato, and half of a medium onion.  Place in a bowl and squirt with the juice from one lime.  It’s bright, crunchy, fresh, and zippy.

The collards have a tough spine down the middle.  Cut around it (it’ll end up looking spear-like), pull it out, and roll up the leaf and slice to get thin julienned strips.  Just saute it up with a little olive oil, salt and pepper.  If you wish to add a little more flavor, finely dice up carrot, celery, and onion to add while sautéing.  You’re going to saute it pretty quickly; no one wants mushy collards.

brazilian collards 1

brazilian collards 2

It’s hard to find tropical fruits {pineapple, mango, kiwi, etc.} that haven’t been picked way before their prime to ship here for US consumption.  I remember eating mangos and avocados the size of footballs when I was in Brazil.  I found slightly-larger-than-softball “Green Mangos” on sale at the grocery store, and thought I’d maybe make a green mango Thai salad or something, and then life got in the way and those poor mangos sat on my counter for a good week or more.  When I decided to make this Brazilian Feast, the mangos had ripened to these beautiful, golden orange, perfectly juicy, sweet mangos.  My one recommendation picking out fruit at the store:  smell them.  If they don’t smell like the fruit is supposed to smell like, I don’t get it.

And, finally, the best Brazilian dessert:  Goiabada.  This is kind of like guava jam and cheese on crackers, only the guava is a super thick, cuttable paste.  The cheese should be a soft, white, creamy cheese {traditionally a cheese from Minas Gerais is used}.  My American substitute?  Quince paste and Havarti cheese.  The Quince paste ended up being suuuuuuper sweet, way too sweet for me, but was a fun substitute nonetheless.  Next time I’m definitely going to have to find a specialty “South-of-the-Border” Grocery Store and try again for that traditional Goiabada taste!

brazilian feast 2


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