I’ve been wanting to make Pão de Queijo since I first came back from Brazil in 1999. Pão de Queijo is a chewy, cheesy, delicious little roll. Many Brazilian restaurants including Rodizios, Tucanos and Fogo de Chão have them, so you may have come across them. They’re often listed as ‘Brazilian Cheese Bread’ or something similar.
Pão de Queijo is made mainly from manioc flour. Back in 1999 you couldn’t get manioc flour in Ironwood, MI where I lived. Actually, I wouldn’t be too surprised if you still couldn’t get it there, but that’s not where I am at the moment, so better success was had.
After some friends were recently discussing Brazilian foods on Facebook I decided to try to find tapioca flour again. Manioc is also known as casava or tapioca. It’s a tuber that grows in hot places. Caroline found it at the Easside Food-Coop.
I used this recipe from Tudo Gostoso — Pão de Queijo Mineiro. It’s very healthy.
- 4 cups manioc/tapioca/casava flour
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 2 cups milk
- 1 cup oil
- Note: My dough turned out super oily. I’ll probably cut back by a couple tablespoons next time.
- 2 large eggs
- 4 cups shredded dried Minas cheese
- Note: We used 2 cups Romano, 1 cup Mozzarella and 1 cup Parmesan
- Pre-heat an oven to 350
- Put the tapioca flour in a big bowl
- Heat the salt, milk and oil on the stove
- As soon as it starts boiling, pour it over the tapioca flour and mix it really well until no little flour balls remain
- Let it cool until you can handle it
- Add the eggs and cheese bit by bit, kneading it well after each addition
- Make cheese balls and put them on a pan.
- The recipe says to make 2cm diameter balls, but we did them bigger
- To accommodate the larger dough balls, I lowered the temp to 300 for the 2nd set I put in the oven.
- Bake until golden brown (about 30 minutes, but watch them!)
Here are all the ingredients laid out. Cheese, tapioca flour, eggs, oil, salt and milk.
We bought some Queso Fresco to use next time we make Pão de Queijo. It’s wet right now, so we can shred it. We’ll leave it up here on top of the fridge until it gets hard. Seems a little questionable to just leave it out, but that’s what I remember my host mom doing with the Minas cheese. So we’ll see.
Heating up the milk, oil and salt mixture. As soon as it started boiling I took it off and dumped it into the tapioca flour.
At this point I knew we be successful. It smelled just like Pão de Queijo. It’s super oily, very stretch and pretty hard to stir.
After it had cooled, I folded in the cheese and eggs, then made some balls. Most were just smaller than ping-pong balls, but we made a couple of big ones.
Success! They’re stretchy, chewy and super delicious just like they’re supposed to be!