Brazilian Bean Stew aka Feijoada
The basic ingredients of feijoada are beans with fresh pork or beef. In Brazil, it is usually made with black beans; in the northeast (Bahia), it is generally prepared with kidney beans (Feijoada à Brasileira).
As a celebratory dish, Feijoada is traditionally served on Saturday afternoons and intended to be a leisurely midday meal. It is meant to be enjoyed throughout the day and not eaten under rushed circumstances.
The meal is usually eaten among extended family and paired with an event like watching a soccer game or other social event. Because of the dish’s heavy ingredients and rich flavors, feijoada is viewed as Brazilian soul food. The dish is frequently compared to American Southern Soul Food which share many similarities in terms of ingredients and taste.
• 1lb dry black beans
• 1-1/2lb slab bacon cut into chunks
• 1/2lb serrano ham, cut into chunks
• 1 Pound andouille or keilbasa sausage cut into chunks
• 1 T olive oil
• 1 large onion, diced
• 5 Garlic cloves, minced
• 2 Thyme sprigs
• 2 Fresh bay leaves
• fresh ground black pepper
• kosher salt
• 1 Jalapeno minced – optional
• 8 Cups of water
In a large pot or dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium high heat.
Add the bacon and cook until browned and crispy on both sides, about 8 minutes. Remove and set aside.
Reduce the heat to low and add the onions, garlic and jalapeno if using. Cook until just softened and the onions start to become translucent, about 5 minutes.
Return the bacon to the pot, along with the beans, ham and herbs. Add the water and bring to a boil. Cover and reduce the heat to low. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until the beans are almost done, about an hour and 15 minutes.
Add the sausage to the pot and cook uncovered until the beans are tender and the broth is slightly thickened, about 30 more minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. You may want to fish out the thyme and bay leaves before serving, or just let your guests know to keep an eye out.
Serve hot, or cool completely store in the refrigerator for up to 4 days (or 1 month in the freezer).