Brazilian Cheese Bread or Pão de Queijo is a comfort food for me, and a piece of my childhood. It only takes the taste of a small morsel for memories of my days growing up in Rio, Brazil to come rushing back. I think of my Catholic school days where some of us would munch on cheese bread for snack time. I remember the times when my family would go to ‘Churrascarias’ or Brazilian steakhouses where there would always be a side of cheese bread. I still long for unending daylight and warm nights when my friends and I would roller skate around the neighborhood until we were called in for dinner and how we would rush back out to play some more until dark. I have fond memories of the nuns, teachers, classmates, neighbors and all the friends I have made along the way. I feel fortunate that I still keep in touch with a couple of my school friends with whom I have recently reconnected thru Facebook. My time in Brazil will always have a special place in my heart.
This super easy recipe is a modified version of two different recipes that I found online. I’m not sure how authentic it is but the flavors come pretty close to what I remember. The chewy cheesy goodness of each bite is unmistakable. I call it dinner rolls on steroids. My girls absolutely love this bread and so does my hubby and everyone I know who has tried it.
1/3 cup canola oil
2/3 cup milk
Scant 1 1/2 cups tapioca flour
1/2 cup grated cheese (I use 1/4 cup of Mexican Blend and 1/4 cup of Parmesan)
3/4 teaspoon of salt
You will need a mini-muffin pan and a blender.
1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Grease a mini-muffin pan. Put all of the ingredients into a blender and pulse until smooth. You may need to use a spatula to scrape down the sides of the blender so that everything gets blended well. At this point you can store the batter in the refrigerator for up to a week.
2. Bake in the oven for 15-18 minutes, until all puffy and just lightly browned. Remove from oven and let cool on a rack for a few minutes. Eat while warm or save to reheat later.