When I think about my country’s typical cuisine, only a few food come to mind that are so Brazilian as Brigadeiro. This is an extreme popular sweet in Brazil, present at almost all kid’s birthday parties and family gathering events.
These little brown gems are fudgy in texture and very chocolaty in taste, creamy inside and rolled in crunchy decorative sprinkles on the outside.
Matheus had a “cultural feast” last week at school and each child had to bring in a dish from its own heritage. Well, I asked him what Brazilian food he would like to take to school and after a few undoable treats (like churrasco and kinder eggs – which are not Brazilian at all but he discovered them when staying in Brazil) he decided he wanted these. Brigadeiros are one of his favorite treats when we go to Brazilian birthday parties. He usually can’t wait for the birthday kid to cut the cake so he will be able to get some of the brigadeiros, which usually surround the cake in a decoratively manner.
Kids of all ages really love these treats! And the best thing is that they are super easy to make. A few ingredients and you get a lot of the little balls! The size I made them I got about 50 from 1 can of condensed milk, which is basically the main ingredient here.
The catch of the recipe is to cook it at medium heat, and stir constantly as you don’t want it to burn or lump up on you. It takes a couple of time making it to get it right, and once you do it you won’t forget.
Since I had to make it for the school last week, I took a few pictures of the process to post it here, together with the recipe of course!
1 can sweetened condensed milk
2 to 3 tablespoons cocoa (add 2, try it and see if you want more chocolate… I like to use 3!)
1 tablespoon butter
First of all, grease a big plate (or a pie plate) with butter and set aside.
Mix all ingredients on a medium saucepan, put pan over medium heat. It may take about 20 to 25 minutes for the mixture to cook completely, and during this time you must keep stirring constantly. The mixture will get thicker as it cooks, and you will know it is ready when you tilt the pan and the mixture sort of comes out of the pan, it runs down without sticking to it (look the picture below!). It will thicken up quite a bit, become darker and smoother than when you started.
After the mixture is cooked pour it on the prepared plate and let it cool completely. Pour sprinkles in a small bowl. Coat the palms of your hands with butter (or oil – some people even use water for this) and, using a teaspoon, spoon the “dough” into your hands and form it into a ball. Roll the ball into the sprinkles and put into a plate or in little paper cups/molds.
It may yield at least 30, or more, depending on what size you make them!
Here is how it should look like when the mixture is cooked through. Tilt the pan, and if done the mixture should easlily slide off the bottom of the pan.
My little assembly line for rolling the brigadeiros...