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.
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.
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:
Yuca fries and chicharron (fried pork rinds):
They also brought us a sort of black bean soup that was delicious:
We then got ready for the feijoada. At first, they brought us some chorizo and pork chops and some collard greens:
Some rice and some oranges (apparently good for the digestion):
And then the black beans and meat:
It came extremely hot and we simply mixed the ingredients together.
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).
Avenida Cidade Jardim, 53 - Jardins
São Paulo - SP.
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And Remember: I Just Want To Eat!