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Farofa - Brazilian Crunchy Topping or Stuffing

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Don’t be fooled by the “dirty sand” look of this typical Brazilian side dish! Farofa is a delicious, crunchy side dish (or stuffing) that is eaten at a daily basis all over Brazil. Given the fact that Brazil is a HUGE country with a large variety of dishes from region to region, achieving that level of popularity is pretty impressive… It certainly does NOT taste like dirty sand. Farofa is crunchy and full of intense flavors that enhance the texture and add an interesting taste to the main course. It is almost like a crunchy hot sauce, but without the heat. It is extremely simple to make, but exotic at the same time. I hope you are curious enough to try.

Makes 2 cups

Ingredients:

  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, finely diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 ½ cup yuca flour (manioc flour)
  • ¼ teaspoon dried coriander
  • ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • ½ cup scallions, finely chopped

Directions:

In a medium skillet over medium-high heat melt butter and olive oil until foamy. Add onions and cook, stirring often, until translucent, 3 minutes. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, 40 seconds. Add yucca flour, dried coriander, and smoked paprika. Cook, stirring often, until golden brown, 7 to 9 minutes. Remove from heat. Season with salt and pepper. Fold in scallions and serve.

Cook’s Notes:

Farofa is a very traditional side dish in Brazil and it has many different variations depending on the region. It is used to sprinkle the top of almost any savory dish, like meats (especially over churrasco), rice, beans, fish stews and sausage. It’s also used as a stuffing for poultry on Christmas supper. This recipe is a very basic version, but depending on the region, many other ingredients may be added; like bacon, collard greens, eggs, bananas and raisins. The variations that have fruit are commonly served with pork and veal; recipes with herbs and eggs are popular with red meats. The more ingredients added the chunkier it becomes, which can resemble a lot a traditional American stuffing. Many times, Americans that visit Brazil describe farofa as the “crunchy stuffing-like side dish that Brazilians eat with anything”.

Yuca flour (also known as manioc or cassava flour) can be found at International grocery stores, South American and African markets. Whole Foods has recently started carrying it too.

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Sebastian decided to "help" with the photo shoot... And I cannot resist taking pictures of him!

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He is my little Chef :)

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Got farofa?

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