I always do a post on food – it is such a huge part of the culture anywhere and I intend to try it all – to the extend my stomach and medication can catch up. And Brazil had plenty of it.
Oh my god – I know nothing about fruit. Growing up on apples and pears (and not liking either one of them), this place is a heaven for fruit. I seriously do not know 80% of the fruit here. Absolutely no idea what it his, how to open it, how to eat it. Even the fruit I do know is mostly from US grocery processing – so when we got guava as desert at the Olympic part for lunch, I had to watch my fellow Brazilians to see how to eat it! Lavinia took me to a popsicle place where you could see them all – so from memory – graviola, custard apple, cashew (did you know it was a fruit and the nut is just the green top??), passion fruit (my absolute favorite), imbue + other 50 I can’t even remember. Acai is absolutely huge here – it is sold everywhere as an ice cream, dark red and there are special shops that only sell acai… so go try it. The Brazilian PR machine needs to get some campaigns going outside to introduce the fruits elsewhere as they were all delicious.
This magic ingredient deserves a writing post on its own, seriously. It looks a bit like yucca, if you ever had one. I cook it at home as a potato but that’s the extend of what I can do with it. Mandioc or tapioca are the core ingredient of Brazilian cooking (bottom left root). EVERYTHING is made of tapioca.
- You fry it for breakfast like and make a bread/taco looking sticky mass
- You make a side dish with the flour, just fried with garlic, olive oil and onion
- You make cakes
- You make very tasty cheese puffs with it (povilhos)
- You make ice cream
- You fry it as a potato with a cheese
- You make bread that is beautifully sticky
Food in restaurants was excellent – not to mention the varieties of my favorites caipirinhas!