Brazil Foods - one of the best things about travelling is getting the chance to enjoy and experience the food and drinks of a new country. It is a massive part of the travelling experience and Brazil Foods is a guide to the different types of cuisine that you might be able to enjoy...from eating and drinking on the beautiful beaches to the incredible BBQ's enjoyed by the locals all over the country. You may want to pack some swimming shorts a size larger than you would normally take, because it is going to be very difficult to stay away from the incredible Brazil foods!
Brazil foods is probably best recognized in the international community by the large amounts of meat served in Brazilian restaurants across the globe - things like Brazilian Churrascaria where you're served chicken, steak, pork and lamb all on skewers are typical of the type of food that you might be served in the top restaurants in Brazil, as well as any BBQ that your new friends might be having. There will probably be a Brazilian restaurant offering Brazil foods in most cities in the world, I definitely suggest trying it.
Here is a (hopefully) helpful guide to some of the words that you will want to remember in Brazilian restaurants:
Alcatra: top sirloin (apparently the nicest, and therefore probably the most expensive, cut of steak)
Ponta de Agulha: ribs
Coracao: for the brave, chicken hearts
This is a clearly short and brief introduction to traditional Brazil food that I think is probably what is best regarded as the "Best of Brazil" and is well worth trying in the various BBQ and steak restaurants that you will be able to find across Brazil - whether it be Rio, Sao Paulo, the Northern states or even the middle of the Amazon (just replace the beef steak for piranha).
Traditional Brazil Foods (source: Flickr - by Churrascaria)
One of best bits of Brazil foods that you can experience if the food served on the beaches across the country...when you are sunbathing here, all you have to do is listen out for the calls of the numerous people walking around selling various food and drinks. As a starter, why not try the barbecued prawns served on large cocktail sticks? They are truly brilliant and whet your appetite for the feast to come! Next course is always going to be the melted cheese on a stick. Now this may not sound that appetizing but is well worth trying (see the photo). The guys will come along, put some cheese into their handheld BBQs and then cook until lightly roasted and then they cover with herbs. Really, these are quite brilliant and definitely worth trying to complete your experience of Brazilian cuisine.
Cheese on a stick (source: Flickr - by www.thousandflavors.com)
To quench your thirst on the beach you can try one of a few options. First there is the coconuts...these you can buy and then chop open yourself or have the beach sellers do it for you. The best thing about this is that after you have finished with the coconut milk you can then eat the flesh of the coconut as a nice snack before dinner. On top of that, if you would rather have an iced tea, they have these in abundance.
As you travel around South America you will become more and more accustomed to picking out the various places where you can get good food for very little. These types of meal are often referred to as "street food". These places are on almost every corner in countries like Brazil and Colombia and offer a really good alternative to the more traditional touristy places...like McDonalds.
Empadinhas are what you can find all over the continent (Empanadas in the Spanish speaking countries) and can be absolutely brilliant if bought from the right vendors. Basically, they are spiced meat and vegetables put into a dough/pastry thing and baked. The usual fillings in Brazil will be either shrimp or chicken but do not be surprised to see beef and pork as well. Really delicious and well worth trying!
As mentioned previously on the site, there is a great snack called Acai with granola. This is like a smoothie covered with granola (oats, nuts and honey) and is absolutely brilliant to help cool you down after an afternoon on the beach in Rio or a long day walking around the cosmopolitan streets of Sao Paulo.