Saturday, May 19, 2012

Brazilian Cheese Bread (Pão de Queijo)

If you've ever eaten at a Brazilian steakhouse, you probably remember the little tasty cheese puff rolls they serve right after being seated.  Despite the fact that you are preparing for an all-you-can-eat meal of freshly sliced steak at your table and an awesome salad bar to accompany it, these rolls are so addictive that it's impossible not to eat a few.  They are light and airy, but at the same time have a chewy center with a texture that is unique to any other bread I've had.  This comes from the use of tapioca flour, which has a texture similar to corn starch.  The puffs are also cheesy and savory- and you can alter the flavor by using different types of cheeses.  Best of all, this recipe is so easy it doesn't even feel like "baking".  You just whiz up the ingredients in a food processor, pour into the muffin pan, and in 15 minutes they are done!  These are a great start to any meal and an easy way to impress your guests with something new.  They are also gluten-free.

1 egg (best at room temp- (either let it sit out, or place it in a bowl of lukewarm water)
1/3 cup olive oil
2/3 cup milk
1 1/2 cups tapioca flour (the same as tapioca starch- which we found in the Hispanic section of our grocery store)
3/4 cup shredded cheese (any cheese will work- start with something more neutral for your first time.  We've made them with Parmesan, cheddar, farmer's cheese, blue cheese, and different blends- it all works!)
1 teaspoon salt

Warming up the egg!
Blue, Parmesan, and Cheddar
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Prepare a greased mini-muffin pan.  (We've never tried them with a regular sized muffin pan, but it might work.)  Combine all ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth.   

Pour the batter into each muffin cup until it is just below full and continue.  There should be exactly enough for all 24 mini-muffin cups.  

Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the tops are puffed and slightly golden.  Let cool slightly before removing from oven and serve either hot or warm. 

Chewy Cheesy Center

1 comment:

  1. Will you guys adopt me so I can eat with you every night?