A soft, chewy bread roll infused with cheese flavor, pão de queijo is Brazil’s favorite savory snack, and an excellent recipe to add to your repertoire. Try your best to use both types of manioc starches (see Note below) called for in the recipe. The combination of the two is what gives the cheese bread its incredibly chewy, gooey-in-a-good-way texture. The recipe will not work if you use only sour manioc starch.
You can prepare the recipe ahead of time and freeze the little rolls of dough, unbaked, for up to 3 months. Just pop them in the oven directly from the freezer, and in 12 to 15 minutes you’ll have deliciously cheesy treats.–Leticia Moreinos Schwartz
LC Manioc What? Note
“When it comes to shopping for manioc starch,” says author Leticia Moreinos Schwartz, “it’s extremely confusing.” She isn’t kidding. Here, she explains what you need to know when sourcing this traditional—and essential—Brazilian ingredient.
Sour manioc starch (poviho azedo) and manioc starch (also known as sweet manioc starch or poviho doce) are both extracted from yucca. The difference is that sour manioc starch undergoes a natural fermentation process. As a result, manioc starch (the sweet one) has a much finer consistency and more delicate texture than sour manioc starch. You can’t substitute one for the other, as they bring different flavors and textures to baked goods. The real confusion begins when different American brands call these products different names.
A few useful terms and translations from Leticia:
Sour manioc starch = povilho azedo
No American brand makes sour manioc starch, which is the most important ingredient in this recipe for pão de queijo, but it can be ordered online.
Manioc starch = sweet manioc starch = povilho doce
Goya calls it tapioca starch but Bob’s Red Mill calls it tapioca flour. If you use only povilho doce, whether it is from Goya, Bob Red Mill, or even the Brazilian brand, the recipe for pão de queijo won’t work.
Manioc flour = farinha de mandioca
This is a completely different type of flour, although it, too, is extracted from the yucca. Think of it as bread crumbs. This is used to make farofa. Although they sound similar, don’t mistake manioc flour for manioc starch.
Brazilian Cheese Rolls
- Quick Glance
- 45 M
- 3 H
- Makes about 30 rolls