When I noticed this week’s theme was Brazil, I realized I actually had a few sources for authentic recipes, including a handwritten recipe that our Brazilian exchange student, Sylvia, had given me.
Sylvia lived with us for six months when I was 13. She came from Sao Paulo, one of the largest cities in the world, and was living in our tiny town in New Jersey. There was a lot for all of us to adjust to. For her, that also meant adjusting to American food. I remember much she came to love though, and we sent her home with suitcases of brownie mix and Pringles, which weren’t as available there.
She brought some food for us to try, but nothing really stands out as much as the fudge she made — Brigadeiro. It was great fun to make this week, and brought back lots of memories of the time Sylvia spent with us!
1 can sweetened condensed milk
4 tablespoons cocoa powder
1 tablespoon butter
Optional: 1/3 teaspoon vanilla extract
sprinkles to decorate
Mix first four ingredients together in pan
Stir vigorously on fire at 9 mark at height until you scrape the bottom of the pan
Let it cool (put it in the freezer for 20 min if necessary) until it gets hard enough to roll in the sprinkles without messing up your hands.**
After cooled, grease your hands with butter or margarine. Take a small ball of the stuff and roll it until it makes a sphere. Roll the little chocolate ball in the sprinkles and put it on a tray or something.
Keep it in the refrigerator
* This is Sylvia’s recipe, complete with her way of describing cooking methods. I’ve changed some pieces to correct some of her English, but left much of it the same.
** Before making this, I consulted the Brazilian wife of a former coworker. She suggested stirring over medium heat and watching carefully to avoid burning. Getting the consistency right was the hardest part. Once you’ve got it almost to a paste like consistency, I’d put it in the freezer for even an hour or two to get it hard enough to roll around. Make sure your hands are really really well greased or it will stick!