Talking about Brazilian spices, you need to know that they generally use local ingredients in making various foods and dishes. There are no complicated spices but there are lots of delicious Brazilian treats and dishes to enjoy.
Brazil is one of the largest countries in the world, this shows that their culture and food are very varied, just as Indonesia is so wide across the equator, with quite varied culinary delights. If you remember Brazil and especially the food in the south, of course you will see the variety of Mexican food there with its unique paprika and other spices.
Fortunately, Brazilian spices are very common, mostly adopted from European cuisines that some people are familiar with. If you already have some Mexican spices in your kitchen, Brazilian spices are similar but less spicy than Mexican spices.
Brazilian Spices – Origins and Influences
The spices in Brazilian cooking are spices introduced by the Portuguese and those who came later, but there are also indigenous local products such as various berries, nuts, and spices and oils. Among the famous local ingredients are Brazilian mint, pinhaos, urucum, various types of local chilies, dendil oil and pequi.
This spice is used as an additive in drinks and desserts. In some areas the concern of consumers is the meat and not the type of seasoning used. A little salt may be enough in preparing a delicious steak.
22 Brazilian Herbs and Spices
Brazilian food uses herbs and spices which are now popular everywhere, so here we list several types of Brazilian spices that you should look at and use.
1. Salt (Sal)
The salt added to the spices might taste a bit strange, but you need to know that Brazilian cooking generally uses only salt and a little lemon.
2. Cinnamon (Canela)
One of the Brazilian spices is cinnamon, ground cinnamon will provide a sweet and spicy contrast in dishes and give the dessert a softer taste.
Cinnamon is used in dishes such as Frango assado and two traditional puddings, curao and the traditional Arroz doce.
3. Annatto (Urucum)
Another Brazilian condiment is anise, it has a slightly spicy taste, its very distinctive feature is its bright red color, and this is given to many foods in Brazil.
4. Clove (Cravo-da-India)
Cloves are a well-known spice and are widely used in various savory dishes. Cloves are the flowers of a fragrant plant with a black color and knob-shaped buds. It tastes spicy and seems sweet. The Portuguese introduced this spice to Brazil, now this spice is widely used in pastries, sweets, but some are used in stews and soups.
5. Bay Leaves (Louri)
Meat and fish dishes are often seasoned with dried bay leaves. These dry leaves will give off a delicious and savory aroma. This is a Brazilian spice which is quite famous in flavoring food.
Most of the dishes we describe here use bay leaves to add flavor.
6. Cumin Powder (Cominho)
In Brazilian cuisine we often find the earthy taste of cumin and a hint of bitterness, perhaps to offset the spiciness.
There are two Brazilian stews that use cumin, namely cabrito ao molho and barreado.
7. Cilantro (Coentro)
Another Brazilian spice is cilantro, but the most famous use of coriander is Mexican, the use of this spice is widespread along the Atlantic coast and the northern part of the country, say Bahia.
Usually they use the whole leaf from the shoot of this plant and this is chopped to be used as a garnish in salads and some other meat and seafood dishes.
8. Garlic (Alho)
Garlic is a very important spice in the culinary world, all over the world even use garlic, including Brazil. It is a favorite food of the Portuguese.
Among the Brazilian dishes that use large amounts of garlic are Feijocada and Refogado.
9. Onion (Midget)
Shallots are another type of spice that there is almost no food that doesn’t use it. It is much more used than garlic.
10. Parsley (Salsa)
Brazilians not only often use onions, garlic in cooking, but they also often use parsley and oregano.
For example, coriander is mostly used in the north of Minas Gerais and Parsley is mostly used in the south. It is said that this parsley was influenced by Japanese influences in the past.
11. Oregano (Oregano)
Oregano is also an important spice in Brazilian cuisine, this is the effect of the influence of Arabic culture in Brazil. Usually, oregano is widely used in pizza, parmigiana and others.
12. Turmeric (Curcuma)
Turmeric is another spice that is used as a cooking spice. Even though it originates from India, north central Brazil also grows turmeric as a cooking spice.
Turmeric is used in dishes such as meat, eggs, fish. Unlike the case with India, who mixes turmeric with other spices, Brazilians prefer to use turmeric separately in their cooking, thus giving a bright yellow color to each dish.
13. Ginger Powder (Gengibre)
Just like several other countries, where ginger is an important spice in certain cuisines. The Brazilians got ginger from the Portuguese who came there long ago. Ginger is not only used in cooking but also as an ingredient in several types of drinks.
14. Fennel Seeds and Anise (Erva-Doce)
The leaves, fennel shoots and shoots are a sweet-smelling ingredient and are widely used in lamb dishes but have also been used in fish.
Anise in Brazil is also the influence of the Portuguese and Africa.
15. Mint (Hortella)
Mint is used in Brazilian cuisine in salads. Also used in appetizers, cold pressed juices, and stuffed vegetables.
Cooking lamb also involves mint, and two of its most common uses are in Brazilian Beef Kibbe and Brazilian Mojitos, alcoholic beverages containing white run. They use fresh mint and lemon.
16. Black Peppercorn (Pimenta de Reino)
Black pepper is one of the Brazilian spices from the influence of India. India is said to be the one who introduced black pepper to the world. Black pepper has a strong pungent taste, aroma and taste up to the nose. Black pepper, whether ground or not, is an important ingredient in various Brazilian dishes.
17. Pepper and/or Hot Sauce (Pimenta)
Brazilians, especially those who live in the north, are very fond of spicy and hot food. Thus, green and red chilies are very popular spices and chili sauces.
18. Paprika (Colorau)
Then, the Brazilian spices is paprika, this spice has a soft chili taste, and contains a little sweetness. This place is a favorite in Italian cuisine and Mediterranean cuisine in the Brazilian region.
19. Nutmeg (Noz Moscada)
Nutmeg is also an important spice in cooking, but it is not used as much as other spices. It is sweet and aromatic and using a pinch of nutmeg can add a choice of flavor to dishes.
Nutmeg is widely used in desserts and hot dishes, you can add it in bread, soups and curries.
20. Giant Brazilian Pine Nuts (Pinhao)
Pinhao is also known as Brazil pine nut and it contains steroids. Even though it is found from pinecones, Brazil nuts come from Araucaria pinecones, usually found only in the Southern Hemisphere.
Pine nuts have been used in Brazilian cuisine long before the arrival of Europeans to Brazil.
Pinhao is about 4-6 times larger than European pine, dark brown in color and tastes much sharper, usually pine nuts are used in making pinhao wine.
21. Allspice (Pimente de Jamaica)
Allspice is a Brazilian spice made from the Pimenta dioica plant, a flavor similar to cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and pepper. In Brazilian spice mixtures, it is used extensively in various spice blends and is used in dishes, vegetables and sweets.
22. Other Herbs and Spices
Not only that, there are many other types of Brazilian spices that might not be accommodated in this article. However, we will just add a few other spices such as Alecrim (Rosemary), Endro (Dill), Salva (Sage), Cebolinha (Chive), Cardamomo (Cardamom Pods), Manjericao (Basil Leaves) and Tomilho (Thyme). This is a spice that can be found in many places in Brazil, but its use is limited to certain dishes and drinks.
Most of the above spices are staple additions to various Brazilian dishes, also used in combination with other spices.
9 Brazilian Seasoning Blends and Cooking Oils
A number of the spices above are used as a mixture with other ingredients in making cooking spices. This is exactly what exists in Asia and the Middle East. Let’s see what Brazilian spice mixes are!
1. Brazilian Seasoning Blend
Brazilian Seasoning Blend is a mixture of several types of spices such as cumin, garlic, ginger, salt, shallots, black pepper, oregano, pepper, chili, paprika, cinnamon, bay leaf, coriander, allspice. This mixed spice is used in meat dishes, especially grilled meat, either as a dry spice or as a main spice.
2. Bahian Seasoning (Tempero Baiano)
The Bahian seasoning consists mostly of ingredients like oregano, parsley, white pepper, cayenne pepper, and cumin and all are mixed with salt. This spice is prepared to season meat, fish and vegetables.
3. Curry (Ceril)
Curry spice is a potent mixture of several spices. As typical spices or basic ingredients in making curry are ginger, garlic, turmeric, and chili powder, although you can mix other ingredients such as cumin and coriander.
So, the basic ingredient is something important that if it is not there, then the spice cannot be said to be curry spice.
4. Portuguese Dry Rub
Spices are used in a number of foods that are roasted or baked. Most of them are made from white meat. The main ingredients are garlic powder, sweet paprika, black pepper, salt and cumin.
If you want it spicier, then add piri-piri sauce or cayenne pepper.
5. Spicy Chili Sauces (Molho Apimentado/Molho Picante)
This is a spicy chili paste made from pepper, included in dishes and served as an addition. Apart from this, conserva en pimento (Picked Chilis) is also a very popular spice.
6. Palm Oil (Azeite-de dende or Dendil Oil)
Dendil oil is a type of oil made from the inside of palm oil fruit, which is used for cooking or frying. It is reddish in color, thick, and spicy with a floral aroma. At first glance, dendil oil looks the same as olive oil.
7. Olive Oil (Azeite)
In Brazilian cooking, olive oil is the main ingredient in many dishes, that’s why it’s healthy and a vitamin addition for digestion. This is also because Brazil is strongly influenced by Italian, Spanish and Mediterranean cuisine.
8. Other Oils Commonly Used
Apart from olive oil, Brazilian cuisine also uses oils such as canola, sunflower oil and corn oil.
9. Butter (Manteiga)
Butter, it is also commonly used in Brazilian dishes such as in rice dishes, spread on bread and some other dishes to provide flavor.