Brazilian Barbecue Series – Speck and Cassava Flour Crumb

Brazilian Barbecue Series – Speck and Cassava Flour Crumb

Farofa is a typical Brazilian crumb made with toasted cassava flour (or chunky corn flour). I have to say here that cassava flour is one of my favourite ingredients ever and I warn you it is quite addictive. Cassava flour is part of Brazilians’ diet since ancient times, it was invented by the indigenous Brazilians as means to preserve their food for long periods. This is an ingredient that matches pretty much with anything. In Brazil the crumb recipes are almost endless and can be either sweet or savoury, some classic farofas are banana, kale, onion, smoked sausage, corn or plain which I posted before to accompany the Brazilian chicken stew.

I could give you a replacement to cassava flour, but there is no point, your barbecue will only taste exotic if you try it! Don’t worry, it is so easy to buy them in Australia (and many other countries around the world) either online or from South American grocers. Cassava flour is so versatile that one can easily turn my recipe into a vegetarian dish, just fry some onions, garlic, add your favourite veggies e.g. grated carrots and cabbage, some herbs, spices and it will be equally delicious.

For a full Brazilian barbecue experience here are a couple of samba songs by renowned Brazilian singer Marisa Monte. Her voice is so beautiful, she sings like an angel! If you are curious about Brazilian music, check her work on Spotify:

Meu Canário – Marisa Monte

O Bonde do Dom – Marisa Monte


3 tbs of extra-virgin olive oil

2 medium onions, finely chopped

2 long red chillies, finely chopped

3 garlic cloves, crushed

200g naturally smoked speck, rindless, finely chopped

2 cups (350g) of toasted cassava flour*

1/2 bunch parsley, finely chopped

Freshly ground salt and black pepper to taste

*Available online or from South American grocers


1. In a large frying pan heat the olive oil over medium heat and fry the onion, stirring for 5 minutes or until soft.  Add the speck and stir for 5 minutes or until crispy. Stir in chillies and garlic and fry for a further 2 minutes.

2. Pour in the cassava flour and stir to combine. Stir in parsley and season with salt and pepper. Serve it warm or at room temperature with grilled or barbecued meats.

Serves: 6-8

Obs: farofa can be prepared a couple of days ahead, reheats well in the microwave


Receita em Português

Farofa de Bacon


3 colheres de sopa de azeite de oliva extra-virgem

2 cebolas médias, picadas bem miudinhas

2 pimentas vermelhas, picadinhas

3 dentes de alho amassados

200g bacon sem pele, picado

2 xícaras (350g) de farinha de mandioca torrada

1/2 ramo de salsa picadinha

Sal e pimenta do reino a gosto

  Modo de Preparo 

1. Em uma frigideira grande aqueça o azeite em fogo médio e frite a cebola mexendo por 5 minutos ou até ficar macia. Adicione o bacon e mexa por 5 minutos ou até que fiquem crocantes. Adicione a pimenta e o alho e frite por mais 2 minutos.

2. Despeje a farinha de mandioca e misture. Misture a salsa e tempere com sal e pimenta. Sirva a farofa morna ou em temperatura ambiente com churrasco ou arroz e feijão.

Serve: 6-8

Obs: a farofa pode ser preparada dois dias antes, pode ser aquecida no microondas.