Brazil is the largest, and most-visited, country in South America. Rio de Janeiro is one of the more popular cities in the country. It is a city on the coast of the country, loaded with beaches and hospitable people. Brasilia is the capital and contains beautiful buildings and cathedrals. Sao Paulo is another popular city. It is the richest city in Brazil and is also considered to be the most trendy city in the entire country.
The cuisine in Brazil is different in every region. Each region has made the best of the resources available to the people, creating dishes that compliment the people as well as the landscape.
The South & Southeast
Food in the south generally consists of sun-dried meats or flame grilled meats and fresh vegetables. Potatoes are not generally used in the culture, but may be found in the form of potato chips at local stores.
Food in the southeast is known for it’s distinctive cooking styles. There are a number of local cheeses that are popular in that section of the country. Rice and beans is a popular dish. Black beans are usually used in this dish. Many of the dishes are of German and Italian influence. The state dish is Moqueca Capixaba. This is a stew that is made with fish, garlic, tomatoes, cilantro and onions. Soy and olive oil are used in the meal and it is cooked in a clay pot.
North & Northeast
The north has a number of rain forests which means that the diet generally consists of root vegetables and fish. Sometimes strange meats, such as alligator meat, are used in some dishes, such as Picadinho de Jacare.
In the northeast, fertile plains and lots of rain equal abundant vegetation. Cattle ranches thrive in this area which means that beef is abundant and is cooked with regularly. Seafood is also used, as are a number of tropical fruits, such as mango, passionfruit, and pineapple.
Strangely enough, pizza is extremely popular in Brazil. It is made in a wood-fire with a thin crust, a slight amount of sauce and a mild white cheese. There are some toppings, which may seem strange to some travelers, such as guava jam, banana, chicken and chocolate. Many Brazilians put ketchup on pizza, and gourmet pizza, such as pizza that may include shrimp and cheese. Definitely strange foods for people that are not used to it.
Hot dogs in Brazil are served with a number of different condiments, such as peas, olives, mashed potatoes, quail eggs and potato sticks. These hot dogs area available in street carts in the larger cities, and may be found in restaurants in some of the smaller cities.
Pinhao is a type of pine nut that is eaten as a snack. They are found from a tree that grows in southern Brazil. The nuts are prepared by being boiled, and are stored until the winter months.