Feijoada

Feijoada is a black bean and meat stew traditionally cooked with different pork parts, like feet, ears, tail, bacon and other smoked meats. It is considered a national dish in Brazil and it is enjoyed over white rice and sprinkled with Farofa (toasted cassava flour seasoned with garlic and salt). This dish falls under the comfort food category and it is great to enjoy during a cold winter day. There are many variations to this dish, this recipe can be considered a basic recipe, giving you the opportunity to make it as is, or develop it into your very own recipe, adding other meats that you might find will go well with it.

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Ready in 45 minutes – Makes 4 portions

To make this recipe you’ll need:

For the Feijoada:

  • 1 ½ cups black beans soaked in 2 cups of water
  • 8 bacon slices cut into 1 inch strips
  • 1 medium onion diced
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 celery stick cut finely
  • 1 red bell pepper diced
  • 1 chicken or beef bouillon
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 bay leave
  • 1 Kielbasa sausage sliced to ½ inch pieces
  • ½ pound smoked ham cut in bite size squares
  • ½ cup freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil for cooking
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 cups cooked white rice for serving
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley for garnish

For the Farofa:

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 3 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 cup pre cooked cassava or coarse cassava flour
  • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
  • salt to taste

Start by soaking the beans for about 2 hours prior to starting to cook

Heat up a frying pan over medium to high heat. Place the bacon strips and cook until they start to turn golden and have released their fat. Pull the cooked bacon out and set aside. Save the pan with the bacon fat, you will need this to cook the Farofa.

Place a medium size pot over medium to high heat, when it is warm, drizzle some olive and cook the onion and garlic for about 3 minutes, add the celery and the bell pepper and continue cooking for another 2-3 minutes. Add the beans with the water they were soaking in, the chicken bouillon and the chicken broth and bring to a boil. Keep it covered and simmering for about 30 minutes, or until the beans start to soften.

While the beans are cooking, take the pan with the bacon fat and heat it up over medium heat, place the butter and let it melt in with the bacon fat. Toss in the minced garlic and cook for 1 minute, add the cassava and sprinkle with some salt. With a wooden spoon, toss the mixture back and forward in the pan, we are toasting the cassava with the garlic and need to be careful not to burn it. After 3-5 minutes, once the cassava starts to turn golden brown, add the chopped parsley and mix well. Once it is all toasted and combined take away from the heat and set aside for serving.

Once the beans softened, add the kielbasa sausage, the ham and the bacon. Continue cooking for another 20 minutes. Finally, add the orange juice during the last 5 minutes of cooking. 

Serve over a bed of white rice, sprinkle with fresh chopped parsley and farofa – Enjoy!

Helpful Tips:

  • You can add other meats to this dish if you so desire – like pork ribs, chunks of beef, or strips of jerked beef.
  • Leave the meat out and use veggie broth if you want to make this dish vegetarian.
  • If you find that the dry beans have absorbed most of the liquid while cooking, feel free to add more chicken broth.
  • You can also use canned beans, just make sure to half the amount of broth and cooking time in the recipe.
  • This recipe freezes extremely well, double or triple your batch to have some emergency meals ready to go in the freezer. Freeze in an airtight container for up to 3 months.

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