Bandeira do Brasil

Bandeira do Brasil

Monday, May 20, 2013


Jorge Amado is one of the best known Brazilian authors and the most translated one. His 
novels are still considered as a portrait of Brazil in the sense that they show not only the hard life of people from Bahia, but also they emphasize most of the stereotypes attributed to Brazilians. His engagement with the Brazilian literary movement called Regionalism led him to make his native land Bahia the scenery for his fiction and to incorporate in his works words closely related to the local speech. Such characteristics made Jorge Amado´s novels a very difficult work to be translated, since most of the local vocabulary, specially those related to religion, nature, social relationships and sensations or descriptions associated with the human body, seem to have no equivalence in other languages and consequently in other cultures.  

Although Brazil is the world's largest Roman Catholic nation, Amado wrote extensively 
and respectfully of the deities and rites of Candomblé, an African-derived religion 
widely practiced in Brazil. In terms of cultural importance, Amado’s works seem to be the entrance door to the Brazilian culture. 

Last year, to celebrate the centenary of his birth, there were events taking place throughout Brazil and also in cities like London, Paris, Salamanca and Lisbon.

Following are some of his works:

If you are in Salvador, Bahia, it is worth visiting the JORGE AMADO FOUNDATION

Saturday, May 11, 2013


On May 12  Brazil’s millions of mothers will get whatever they want. Mothers don’t want to do anything in the house, no cooking, nothing, they want to eat out. So all the restaurants are a full. 

Restaurants have been bracing themselves for Sunday’s Mothers Lunch frenzy. Rio’s O Globo newspaper offered a guide to restaurants with special Mother’s Day menus. What is a perfect Mother’s Day lunch? Spaghetti with shitake mushrooms and prawns in herb butter, for R$42 at Terra Brasilis.

Research agency Euromonitor offered up its Ten Facts About Mothers, garnered from research in eight markets – including Brazil. As you might expect, this was consumer-based. “Mothers in emerging markets especially enjoy learning about new products (trying new products, browsing shopping malls), compared to mothers in developed markets,” for instance.

Yes, it’s a massive cash-in for retailers. Anything that can possibly be given a Mother’s Day hook in advertising will be. Brazilian mothers have clearly grasped this. Apparently they increasingly opt for electronic goods as presents. According to a survey of 1,300 mothers in Brazil, Colombia, Venezuela and Uruguay reported by the G1 site, the most popular is a tablet.

Excerpts by Dom Philips from Folha de Sao Paulo

Monday, May 6, 2013


The Rio Negro River runs south by southwest through the Amazon watershed and eventually flows into the Amazon River itself. It is a dark-water river with high levels of acidity. The good news about the pH levels is that mosquitoes don't like the water. The acidity also limits aquatic diversity to only 600 species of fish (as if that's not enough) The piranha has the potential to eat any of them. 
One interesting fact about the Amazon and Rio Negro rivers is that they sustain a large amount of fish that were once saltwater species. Apparently the Amazon connected the Pacific and Atlantic oceans. The eruption of the Andes Mountains closed the gates on the Pacific, and all those fish were trapped in the rivers. Some evolved into freshwater species. The black piranha can grow up to 16 pounds, and a pack of them can rip a man to shreds in seconds. 

Piranha flesh is flaky and delicate, almost like a fluke. The soup is easy, quick, and done in one pot.
In the Amazon and in the Pantanal it is a flavorful dish and is appreciated for its aphrodisiac quality. The soup is usually served in a bowl or cup, adding a healthy dollop of hot sauce. Some people prefer to thicken the soup with manioc flour.It is usually served as an appetizer with a side of crackers, before a fish meal or barbeque.

Want to give it a try? Here´s an easy recipe: 


1 onion, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
Basil, chopped
Celery, chopped
Parsley, chopped
2.5 kilos of medium sized piranha fish
3 cloves of garlic, chopped
Malagueta pepper, chopped
2 bay leaves
1 cup of coconut milk
1 teaspoon of saffron

How to prepare:
Scrub the skin of the piranhas to remove the scales, clean the insides and remove the eyes.
Cut them open lengthwise and boil them with the heads in two liters of water with no other ingredients.
Boil until the meat comes off the bones.
Strain the broth to remove the fish bones that are quite small and sharp. Reserve the broth.
Chop the onion, pepper, garlic, salt to taste, olive oil and saffron in a blender. Sautee the mixture in another pan.
Add the piranha broth and let it boil. After a while, add two bay leaves, the coconut milk, basil and malagueta pepper and boil a little bit longer.
The soup is ready when all the flavors and ingredients have blended well. Add the parsley just before serving.

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