Pão de Queijo or Bread of Cheese in English is a Brazilian recipe usually made for breakfast or as a snack. Like many great foods in the Western Hemisphere, Pães de Queijo has its roots in the culinary creations of African slaves. It is sold at snack bars and bakeries in Brazil and it can also be bought frozen but it easy to make this morning treat at home.
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Pães de Queijo ~ Brazilian Cheese Balls
- ⅔ cup milk
- ⅓ cup canola oil DO NOT use olive oil
- 2 cups cassava flour
- 6 oz hard cheese cheddar or parmesan
- 2 eggs
- salt and pepper to taste
- Mix the milk and oil together into a pan, and boil until a white foam appears.
- Gradually add flour to this hot mixture; mix well to form a firm ball with no lumps.
- Let the dough rest for 15 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 375°F.
- Mix in the eggs and the cheese (plus the salt and pepper) to the dough. The dough will become sticky and wet. If the dough is too wet, add more flour and cheese in order to make firmer balls (instead of cookies).
- Grease your hands, and form small balls 1 to 2 inches in diameter.
- Place the balls on a greased baking tray.
- Cook for 15 – 20 minutes, until the top begins to brown.
- Remove from oven and let cool on a cooling tray.
Did You Know
Pão de Queijo originated from Portuguese colonists like many other Brazilian foods. Slaves would soak and peel the cassava root and make bread rolls from it. At this time, there was no cheese in the rolls. At the end of the 19th century, more ingredients became available to the colonial community such as milk and cheese. They added milk and cheese to the tapioca roll making what we now know as Pão de Queijo.