Brazilians like to celebrate life with every opportunity they have, and Valentine’s Day is no exception.
For such a romantic occasion, there’s nothing better for Brazilians than brigadeiros, their iconic national dessert. Michelli Luz, founder of the Austin-based gourmet sweet treats shop Rio Bite, says that brigadeiros are a very popular Valentine’s present for couples in her country.
“The man is pretty much expected to give out brigadeiros as part of the gift,” Luz says. “They are so delicious. If you like fudge, they are very fudgy, although after a little while they crystallize on the outside, so they are nice and crispy on the outside. Soft inside, so delicious.”
Brigadeiros are small truffle-style delicacies made of condensed milk and cocoa. The recipe dates back to the 1940s.
“It was put together by a brigadier general. That’s the reason for the name ‘brigadeiros’,” Luz says. “He was raising funds for his presidential campaign. The women got behind him and the rest is history.”
Most of families in Brazil include brigadeiros as part of their special occasions as a sign of love and care.
“I grew up with so much family and love, and we always gathered, we always celebrated,” Luz says. “And of course the brigadeiros were always a part of the celebrations.”
Written by Cesar Edmund Lopez-Linares.