Feijoada at Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

 Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

Feijoada is Brazil's national dish, so I could not be in that country and miss an opportunity to try it. This specialty is made of black beans (feijoa in Portuguese), meat, manioc, collard greens (cove) and oranges. It is like a Brazilian cassoulet, but cheaper as the meat consists of the remains of the animal: ears or tail for instance. 

 Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

There are different versions on the origin of the feijoada: some say that it was a dish created by slaves, their master only giving them the remains of the pig that they did not want to eat and allowing them to go grab some fruit to accompany their meal. Others say that it was a traditional meal at the time of the Roman Empire, that was composed of various types of meat and vegetables. Later on, several versions of the dish popped up: the “Cozido” in Portugal, “Casoeula” in Italy or “Cassoulet” in France. When the Portuguese arrived in Brazil, the cozido was adapted to local flavors by using black beans.

 Dining room at Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

Dining room at Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

So here we are, at Bolinha, a well known restaurant in Sao Paulo. It is a huge place for sure as the dining room in the back can attest.

They first brought us some bread, that included these famous Portuguese cheese rolls, as well as some potato croquettes:

 Bread at Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

Bread at Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

 Potato croquettes at Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

Potato croquettes at Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

Yuca fries and chicharron (fried pork rinds):

 Y uca fries and chicharron at Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

Yuca fries and chicharron at Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

They also brought us a sort of black bean soup that was delicious:

 B lack bean soup at Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

Black bean soup at Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

We then got ready for the feijoada. At first, they brought us some chorizo and pork chops and some collard greens:

 Pork chops and chorizo at Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

Pork chops and chorizo at Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

 Collard greens at Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

Collard greens at Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

Some rice and some oranges (apparently good for the digestion):

 R ice at Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

Rice at Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

  Oranges at Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

Oranges at Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

Some manioc:

 M anioc at Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

Manioc at Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

And then the black beans and meat:

  Feijoada at Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

Feijoada at Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

It came extremely hot and we simply mixed the ingredients together. 

  Feijoada at Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

Feijoada at Bolinha in Sao Paulo, Brazil

I liked it: hearty, comforting and surely on the heavy side, as a cassoulet can require a walk or a nap after (maybe both, but not at the same time). 

If you are in Sao Paulo, you may want to go to Bolinha for a good feijoada. In New York, SOBs is definitely your spot for it (check out my review of SOBs here).

Bolinha
Avenida Cidade Jardim, 53 - Jardins
São Paulo - SP.
http://www.bolinha.com.br/ingles/

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Bolinha Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato