Feijoada (Brazilian black bean stew)

This recipe was a long time in the making. I tried so many “authentic” feijoada recipes that just fell flat or required me to shop at specialty markets. No thanks, I’m a simple lady. I want to be able to run to my local grocery store and buy everything I need under $20. I decided to wing it one day and I’m so glad I did! This recipe turned out to be SO simple and required a minimal amount of ingredients. No need for a specialty market!!

Let’s go!

Side note: My little kitchen has poor lighting but I did my best with the pictures.

1. Soak you black beans over night. This will keep the cook time reasonable. You can also use a pressure cooker but to be honest, I don’t own one and have no idea how to go about using one. 

2. Rub a generous amount of salt onto your pork and cut them into pieces big enough to fit in your pot.  Add olive oil to pot and brown the ribs.

3. Once brown, remove the ribs and add the chopped onion. Sprinkle a bit of salt over them and stir. Cook until tender.Add garlic and cook until fragrant and then add the ribs back in. Fill pot with water until the ribs are fully covered. Cook for an hour.

4. Drain water from soaked beans and add beans to the pot. Add bay leaves and fill with water, about 2 inches above the beans. You may need to add water as it cooks. Cook until beans are tender. I like to cook the beans all day and periodically check them to see if it needs more water. Cooking them all day make them easier to digest and reduces all the gastro issues that comes with beans.  

5. Remove a bowlful of beans and use a fork to smash it. You want it to become paste-like. This will thicken your dish and make it delicious. I like my feijoada to be extra thick so I smash 2 bowlfuls.

6. At some point I like to take my ribs out and pull any large fat pieces off the bone. The meat should fall apart. You don’t have to do this but I do becuase the texture of fat is gag worthy. Add all the meat back in, including the bones.

You are done at this point. I keep the food cooking on the stove until my husband gets home so he can have a fresh bowl. Feijoada is traditionally eaten with white rice, collard greens, farofa (toasted cassava flour mixture), and a couple of orange slices. If you have IBS I would make sure these aren’t trigger food for you. I usually portion out a few meals worth of beans and then freeze the rest because, believe me, this is a lot of food! 

Feijoada (Brazilian Black bean stew)
A simple recipe that will feed your family for days
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  1. 1 lb of black beans
  2. 1 package of Pork ribs
  3. 6 tablespoons of oil
  4. 1 onion, chopped
  5. 2 tablespoons of minced garlic
  6. 2 bay leaves
  7. salt to taste
  1. Soak the beans overnight.
  2. Add olive oil to a large pot and rub a generous amount of salt on the pork. Cut the pork into small enough portions so that it will fit comfortably in the pot. Add pork to pot and brown.
  3. Once browned, remove pork, set aside. Add onion to the pot with a dash of salt, cook until tender
  4. Add garlic and cook until fragrant
  5. Add ribs and fill pot with water until the ribs are covered. Cook for about an hour.
  6. Drain water from beans and add beans to pot. Then add bay leaves and fill the pot with water until water level is 2 inches above the beans.
  7. Cook until beans are tender, stirring occationally (I cook them all day). Add more water if needed.
  8. Remove a bowlful of beans and smash, add back in.
  9. Remove meat from pot and remove any large fatty chunks. Add the meat and bones back into pot. Discard fat.
  10. Keep cooking until you like the consistency
  1. Traditionally, it is served over white rice with a side of farofa(toasted cassava flour mixture), collard greens, and a couple slices of oranges.
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