Brazilian Farofa Recipe
Brazilians enjoy a wide range of cultural foods around the holidays, but no Christmas meal is complete without the perfect buttery, toasted side dish. Farofa is a naturally gluten-free side dish that is made from toasted cassava flour and a handful of other easy-to-find ingredients.
Cassava flour is indigenous to Brazil, but you can also find it in many grocery stores in North America. If you can’t find it at your regular chain grocers, try a specialty grocery store or search for online retailers that carry it.
Health benefits of cassava flour
Cassava flour contains a large amount of resistant starch. This form of dietary fiber is similar to soluble fiber and can be extremely beneficial to your overall digestive health. This means that when you are enjoying this delicious recipe, you are also giving your digestive system a boost!
How to eat farofa
As a side dish, farofa is wildly versatile and pairs beautifully with many native Brazilian dishes as well as North American fare. You’ll often see farofa served alongside Brazilian barbecue and picanha in Brazil, but you’ll also love how it pairs with hearty stews, ham and other meat dishes.
You don’t have to wait for the holidays to enjoy farofa either. After beans and rice, farofa is one of the most popular side dishes in Brazil. Here’s how you’ll prepare your very own farofa at home:
- 3-4 strips of bacon, diced
- 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
- 3-4 garlic cloves, minced
- 5 tablespoons butter or vegetable oil
- ¼ cup fresh chives, chopped
- ¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Cook diced bacon over medium heat. Start with a cold pan to better render the bacon fat.
- After the fat is rendered, add the butter (or oil) into the pan and continue cooking until the bacon is crispy and golden brown.
- Add the onions and sauté for several minutes, until translucent.
- Add the garlic and sauté for approximately 1 minute.
- Stirring continuously to prevent burning, add the cassava flour.
- Add salt and pepper and continue until the flour is evenly toasted. This should take approximately 5 minutes, but no longer.
- Remove the skillet from heat and add the chives and parsley. Stir well to combine.
- Serve at room temperature and enjoy!