Even though the calendar says "September" and schools are in session, the weather still says "Summer!" to me. With all the recent attention to Brazil due to the Summer Olympics, what better way to wrap up the end of summer than with a Brazilian Churrasco Party?
Churrasco is a Spanish and Portuguese word that is similar to our barbecue, in which a variety of meats are served that have been cooked on a barbecue grill, often with skewers. Although we used the churrasco sauce and dry spices from our Try the World Brazil box, you can also find wonderful churrasco sauce recipes on the web.
After marinating our chicken and beef, we put it on skewers and grilled them directly on the table with a portable electric grill. This added to the enjoyment of the dinner and the smell of the spices while cooking was incredible.
We also grilled red onions, zucchini and okra, which had been marinated with the same spices, on skewers. We served Pao de Queijo, or cheese bread...
and Romeu and Julieta, which is a combination of slices of goiabada, or guava paste and soft cow's milk cheese. The combination of the salty cheese and the sweet, fruity taste of the guava paste was delicious.
Everyone helped out in some way to make the meal, so the party atmosphere began even before the meal began. Everyone was laughing and talking as they did their tasks.
We also made a virgin Jabuticaba Caipirinha. We used a regular virgin Caipirnha recipe and added some Jabuticaba jam to it. It was sweet and tangy, like a limeade with grape-like notes. So refreshing!
For desert we had Brazil nut cookies, Brigadeiro and, of course, Brazilian coffee! Here is a simple recipe for this sweet treat.
Recipe for Brigadeiro
In a heavy saucepan, over medium-high heat, combine one 14 oz. can of sweetened condensed milk, 3 Tab. cocoa powder and 1 Tab. butter. Stir constantly until the mixture thickens. This should take 10-15 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to cool about 30 minutes. Using a spoon or melon baller, scoop out the mixture (about 1 Tab. each) and shape into balls. Roll in chocolate sprinkles or pacoquita (traditional Brazilian peanut candy).
I hope that you are inspired to learn more about the culture of Brazil and celebrate the end of summer with a Churrasco Party.