Feijoada: Popular Brasilian Dish

feijoadaFeijoada is undisputedly the most popular dish of Brazil. This Brasilian Recipe
essentially comprises of black beans and pork. Different garnishes are
used in different parts of Brazil, but it traditionally included
“farofa”. Like a number of other dishes there are many tales about its
origins.

The most romantic one is from the days of slavery when
over a million slaves came from Africa. Beans were a staple part of
their food and on special occasions, they would gain from the scraps and
leftovers of pork meat coming from the rich kitchen.

There is
another version and perhaps more realistic that traces Feijoadas’ origin
from the Portuguese stews or ‘cozidos’. Originally Feijoada was
prepared with all parts of the pig but today it is only cooked with good
meat parts.

Ingredients for Feijoada

Dry black beans – 1 12 ounce packet (soaked overnight)
Onion- 1 1/2 cups chopped
Green onions – 1/2 cup chopped
Garlic – 1 clove chopped
Ham hocks – 2 smoked
Diced ham – 8 ounces
Thickly sliced bacon -1/2 pound, diced
Olive oil -1 tablespoon
Bay leaves – 2 crushed
Coriander – 1/8 teaspoon ground
Salt and pepper- to taste
Fresh cilantro – 1/2 cup chopped (optional)
Fresh parsley – 1/4 cup chopped (optional)

Method of Preparation:

1. Heat olive oil in a Dutch oven or a big pot.

2. Add three fourth of the chopped onion, garlic and green onions. Stir for about 4 minutes or till soft.

3.
Add the soaked beans and pour enough water to cover them by around 3
inches. Bring the mix to a boil and decrease heat to allow it to simmer
uncovered on medium-low flame for a couple of hours or till tender.

4. While beans cook, put the ham hocks in another smaller pot with half cup chopped onion.

5.
Pour water and allow it to simmer for an hour or till the meat is well
cooked and pulls off easily. Remove water and add the meat to the pot
with beans.

6. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Place bacon,
ham with the leftover onion in a baking dish and bake it till crispy or
15 minutes.

7. Drain the ham and bacon mix and place it with the
beans. Season this Brasilian Recipe with salt and pepper, bay leaves and
coriander. Let it simmer for half an hour uncovered.

8. Add chopped parsley and cilantro and it is ready to serve.