Anyone on who is knowledgable about Brazilian cooking?
My cleaning lady is Brazilian and hardly speaks a word of English, but the last time she came over she offered to make me a meal using my pressure cooker while she cleaned next time. I am eager to take her up on it, but our language differences made it impossible to get much detail in terms of what I should buy. She mentioned beans, meat and rice, but not sure what type to get.
I recently posted that I just started using my pressure cooker myself (based mainly on her apparent enthusiasm for the thing), so I know dried beans would be a fair start. What kinds of beans? Should I get a nice cut of pork or would beef or chicken make more sense? Also, are there any particular spices that are prevalent in Brazilian cooking that I should have on hand?
Talk about a first world problem, I know, but I am so excited about coming home to a clean apt and home cooked Brazilian meal. I just want to make it as easy on her as possible. Thanks!
Beans pork and rice sounds like it could be feijoada she's going for. Go with black beans, and cheap pork cuts, This is a "peasant dish" so it's traditionally made with the undesirables...think ear, head, foot, hocks, tail, things like that. If you want to work with regular supermarket ingredients, I'd suggest some kind of spicy sausage, pork shoulder, and maybe some ribs. You'll also want to throw some smoked/cured meats in there too, like bacon or hocks. If you're feeling adventurous throw in a foot or two.
There are no special spices you need.
I used to employ 9 Brazilians. Whenever they purchased beans, it was always dried and always blackbeans. bg90027 is right, feijoada is the national dish made with meats and...black beans. I'd suggest getting pork, but not a "nice" cut like loin, but more like shoulder (boston butt), or even meaty hocks.
Here is the definiton of Feijoada by Leticia Moreinos Schwartz who wrote the cookbook The Brazilian Kitchen. I interviewed her for a newspaper. She's from Brazil and very dynamic. She lives in Connecticut and has appeared on the Today show. Her recipe for Brigadeiros (truffle-like chocolates) was named the number one sweet treat by Saveur magazine. Anyway, that's just my way of saying she knows her stuff.
If you want her recipe for Feijoada from The Brazilian Kitchen let me know, I have it.
"Feijoada is one of the most famous dishes from Brazil. The Feijoada is a stew of black beans with lots of different kinds of meats cooked inside. In Brazil we use a wide variety of meats including pig's feet and pig's ears. Finding the specialty meats for feijoada can be difficult (see sources) but the most important thing is to use a combination of salted, smoked and fresh. A typical Brazilian Feijoada is served with farofa, collard greens, and orange sections. Like churrasco, it's mostly consumed as a combination of lunch and dinner. (Please find recipe in The Brazilian Kitchen cookbook.)"