Brazilian cake / dessert

Brigadeiro and Beijinho de Coco (Brazilian Chocolate and Coconut Truffles)

Friday, June 27, 2014Enz F

Just recently, I came across two very addicting and fantastic desserts from the country of Brazil. My four-year-old niece and I instantly fell in love with these little morsels, coated with sprinkles and beautifully laid in mini candy cups. These are chewy round candies but better than your tootsie roll or fruit-tela, I bet. These little gems are no less than the Brigadeiro and Beijinho de Coco. The little balls of sweets reminiscent of truffles are very popular Brazilian treats traditionally serve during special events, particularly kiddie birthday parties.





Brazilian truffles are very fun to make.
These candies are so fun and easy to make, and they share a common ingredient – the sweetened condensed milk, the one normally sold in can. The entire content of the can is slowly simmered until the texture turns viscous but firm enough to shape into balls. If you add chocolate or cocoa powder, it will turn into brigadeiro, whereas beijinho if mixed with fresh or desiccated coconut flakes. They are usually rolled into balls and coated to finish with colorful sprinkles, coconut flakes, confectioners or crushed nuts, and placed in attractive mini paper cups. The beijinho is traditionally decorated with cloves. These festive candy treats, most preferred by children and adults alike, are oftentimes used as topping to cakes or as fillings to pastry when not shaped into balls. They are also perfect as gift for any wonderful occasion.


These are little bites in honor of a goodlooking Brazilian air force officer.
Brigadeiro is a simple Brazilian chocolate bonbon that was made known and became popular in the 1940s. It was Brazil's answer on the issue on food shortage when the country halted the importation of basic commodities like fruits, nuts and eggs during World War 2. The name of this famous fudgy chocolate candy was derived from the military title of a famous Brazilian Air Force officer, Brigadier-General Eduardo Gomes. It is believed that Brazilian ladies from Rio were the first makers of brigadeiro in honor of the goodlooking and gorgeous general.


"Little Kiss"
On the other hand, beijinho de coco is the well-loved coconut version of brigadeiro. Beijinho means “little kiss” when translated in Portuguese. Other names which it has also become known for are braquinho and docinhos. I fell inlove with beijinho as it reminded me of two famous Filipino desserts, yema (egg and milk custard candy) and macapuno (sweetened mutant coconut variety) – somewhat a hybrid of the two.

I relish Brazilian candies as much as I enjoy my cupcakes and brownies. Brazil is definitely one delightful box with assorted treats and surprises to satisfy the sweet tooth. No words to best describe brigadeiro and beijinho except they are the total indulgence.
Brigadeiro and Beijinho de Coco (Brazilian Chocolate and Coconut Truffles)
Yields 20 pieces of brigadeiro and 20 pieces of beijinho de coco

INGREDIENTS:
For the brigadeiro
  • 300 mL sweetened condensed milk 
  • 3 tbsps. cocoa powder 
  • ¼ tbsp. coffee powder 
  • 1 tbsp. softened butter 
  • chocolate sprinkles, for coating 
For the beijinho de coco 
  • 300 mL sweetened condensed milk 
  • ¼ cup desiccated coconut flakes, plus ¼ cup extra for coating 
  • 3 egg yolks 
  • 1 tbsp. softened butter 
  • candy sprinkles, for coating 
  • cloves, for decorating 
Other 
  • butter or oil, for greasing 

PROCEDURE: 
For the brigadeiro
  1. Grease a platter by brushing with butter or oil. Ready some chocolate sprinkles in a plate. Set aside until needed. 
  2. In a heavy-bottomed saucepan over low heat, combine together the condensed milk, butter, coffee powder and cocoa powder. Whisk very well until no more lumps is visible. You may opt to dissolve first the cocoa and coffee powder in 4 tablespoons of water. 
  3. Stir constantly for about 10 to 15 minutes or until the mixture achieves a fudge-like viscosity, firm enough to stay together. It is done when it starts to pull away from pan, leaving the sides and the bottom when tilted. 
  4. Remove from heat and transfer the mixture into the greased platter. Bring to cool at room temperature and refrigerate (about 10 minutes) until firm enough to roll into balls. 
  5. Grease your hands with butter or oil and take a small amount (about 1 tbsp.) of chocolate mixture and roll into tiny chocolate candy ball (the size of a jackstone ball). 
  6. Roll the brigadeiro on the chocolate sprinkles until the entire surface is decorated and place the coated ball in a mini candy paper cup. Repeat from step 5 for the remaining until the rest of the chocolate mixture is used up. Serve as an after meal dessert or place in an airtight container and store in the refrigerator up to a week. Enjoy! 
For the beijinho de coco 
  1. Grease a platter by brushing with butter or oil. Place some desiccated coconut and candy sprinkles in a plate. Set aside until needed. 
  2. In a heavy-bottomed saucepan over low heat, combine together the condensed milk, butter, egg yolks and desiccated coconut. Whisk very well until evenly combined. 
  3. Stir constantly for about 10 to 15 minutes or until the mixture achieves a thickness similar to rice porridge but firm enough to stay together. 
  4. Remove from heat and transfer the mixture into the greased platter. Bring to cool at room temperature and refrigerate (about 10 minutes) until firm enough to roll into balls. 
  5. Grease your hands with butter or oil and take a small amount (about 1 tbsp.) of coconut mixture and roll into tiny coconut candy ball (the size of a jackstone ball). 
  6. Roll the beijinho on the desiccated coconut and candy sprinkles until the entire surface is decorated and place the coated ball in a mini candy paper cup. Stick one clove into each candy. Repeat from step 5 for the remaining until the rest of the coconut mixture is used up. Serve as an after meal dessert or place in an airtight container and store in the refrigerator for up to a week. Enjoy! 

TIPS FROM ENZ:
  1. The candy balls can also be decorated with crushed almonds and peanuts or topped with fruit jam or cream. 
  2. These are perfect as gifts or party fares in place of the more expensive bonbon and truffle candies.

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