Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Pao de Queijo - Brazilian Bread That's Gluten-Free


I admit That I am new territory here with this bread. Firstly, I have never presented any bread from South America before. Yes, about 2 years ago I brought a recipe for tortillas, but, truthfully, they are mostly from Mexico. And very similar to the Laffas we all know and love from the Middle East in all its variations. This one is totally different.

Let's start with the name, Pao de Queijo, a Portuguese name literally meaning 'Cheese Bread'. But that doesn't begin to describe what makes this bread so special, and why it is so easy to make/bake.

No yeast. No baking powder or baking soda. Gluten-free flour. Done in 30 minutes, including the prep time. What could be easier? And as if that is not enough, the sharp cheese makes it simply delicious all by itself. Serve these warm from the oven all alone, or with just a small pat of butter. Yum!!

Here's What You'll Need: (for about 6 muffin-sized rolls)
1 cup cornflour (not corn meal)*
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup warm water
1 tsp.salt
1 egg, beaten lightly
1/3 cup yogurt
1 cup sharp cheese (Cheddar, Kachkeval, or a good sharp goat cheese,  for example), grated finely
* You can use potato starch (flour) or tapioca starch (flour) instead.

Here's What You'll Need To Do:

1. Preheat the oven to 450 F (220 C) . Lightly oil a muffin tin with butter or oil.

2. Place the flour into a medium bowl. In a small pot on the stovetop, mix the oil, water and salt and bring them to a boil.

3. Mix the oil-water mixture into the flour, followed by the egg, then the yogurt. Mix it all to form a very thick batter.

4. Add the cheese and stir to combine.

5. Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin cups, about 3/4 full.

6. Place the muffin tin in the oven, reduce the temperature to 350 F (180 C), then bake for about 25 minutes until they are a deep golden brown.

7. Cool on a rack, but serve while still warm.


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