• Crispy on the outside, soft and cheesy in the middle. (Camellia Aebischer)Source: Camellia Aebischer
Skip the blending and chilling, just mix and bake in a muffin tin for the fastest Brazilian cheese bread.
Camellia Ling Aebischer

9 Apr 2021 - 12:18 PM  UPDATED 13 Sep 2021 - 11:00 AM

Brazil’s chewy, cheesy, tapioca-based bread rolls called pão de queijo are a crispy-chewy food-lovers dream.

This recipe for them has been floating around the SBS Food website since Feast magazine and uses a dump and mix method that makes 24 delightful cheesy treats in minutes.

Pão de queijo: Brazil’s addictive chewy, cheesy bread
If someone in Brazil offers you some bread, don’t be surprised if it’s chewy.

It’s a twist on the traditional recipe which is made using a firmer dough, rolled into balls and baked until puffed like a little choux bun. Clara Luboss makes a loose batter using a food processor and pours it into a muffin pan but I’m taking things one step further back.

Introducing pre-grated cheese. But not just any ordinary shredded bag, you want to get the really fine powdered parmesan. Growing up my sister called it dandruff parmesan which didn’t really help the appetite but you get the picture.

The super fine texture of the cheese means it incorporates well into the batter. You’re welcome to hand-grate the whole 1 ½ cups but the tubs from the deli have served me well here.

The original recipe calls for salt but I used salted butter. If you use oil add a good pinch of salt.

How to make pão de queijo

Add 3 cups tapioca flour, 1 cup milk, 1 cup oil or melted butter, 3 eggs and 1 ½ cups of grated parmesan cheese to a bowl. Mix well until a thick batter forms.

Spoon into two non-stick 12 hole muffin pans and bake at 180°C for 20 mins until golden and crisp.

Cool slightly and enjoy while still warm.

These freeze well and are best reheated in the oven for 10 mins. If you do get lazy you can microwave them for 10-15 seconds but they will lose all their crispness and become all chew.

The recipe makes heaps so I just freeze and re-heat a few in the oven.

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