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Souperchef Creation : Vegan Caldinho de Feijão
Brazil is the largest black bean producing country. In 2006, the Food Guide for the Brazilian Population recommended that beans be consumed at least once every day. And so it was. Every Brazilian I met during my trip regardless of ancestry and background told me their staple every day is rice and beans. There are about 195 million people in Brazil, and probably almost as many recipes for making beans (feijão). Every cook has a personal recipe, most likely inherited from a mother, a grandmother, or a helper.
In Recife, in the region of Pernambuco, in Northeast Brazil, I tried caldinho, a very typical soup made from black beans at O Bragantino, an institution for 50 years selling traditional comfort foods with Portuguese origins. I was told that caldinho is not exactly feijoada, although it has a similar black bean base. In caldinho, the black beans are pureed to give a thicker texture. Typically eaten at the beach, one can personalise their caldinho with different types of condiments and toppings such as poached eggs, jerked beef, chives, olives and many others.
Inspired by the caldinho I had and wanting to make a vegan feijoada, this version was created. I’m sure I am being completely blasphemous by creating this vegan version! The high calorie count and saturated fats found in the original recipes with the addition of salted pork and jerked beef, challenged me to innovate so we can enjoy the boldness of the flavours sans the calories. In place of the meat, I’ve used tapioca, yam, chayote, sweet potatoes and tomatoes to add a variety of textures. With the addition of cumin and paprika for extra flavour, I am sure you will find The Soup Spoon’s version hearty, tasty and filling! I’ve also added a few special condiments like tempeh (fermented bean cakes) and coriander to make a Brazilian caldinho with a local touch.
Ingredients: Black beans, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, yam, tapioca, chayote, celery, carrots, garlic, onions, coriander, chillies, paprika, cumin, oranges and mango juice.
Condiment: Chopped coriander, chopped tomatoes, lime wedge, chopped tempeh and a dash of Tabasco sauce (optional).
(Gluten-free / Vegan / Egg-free / Dairy-free)