The brigadeiro is one of Brazil’s most famous traditional sweets, made from cocoa powder, condensed milk (I swear every Brazilian dessert is made with condensed milk…someone back me up on this), a little butter, and chocolate sprinkles. They are often served at celebrations, and they always make me smile. If I see them in a Brazilian cafe, or even when I make a little batch of them at home for Fabio, they just have their little way of making me light up. Sure, it’s because they are sweet, soft little balls of chocolate, but also because I have such fond memories of making hundreds of them for our wedding. (Quick back story, in case you don’t already know: I am married to a Brazilian! We got married two years ago in Chicago.) I remember working for hours in my tiny Chicago apartment kitchen, the night before the wedding, making hundreds of brigadeiros with my mother, mother-in-law, sister-in-law, and bridesmaids. (We also made hundreds of bem casados – which were pretty difficult to make. Never again.) One thing I love so much about Brazilian culture, and especially Brazilian cooking, is that it is done with lots of other people, in a pack. I love seeing pictures of Fabio’s family in Brazil, preparing for a family member’s wedding or baby shower. Everyone is gathered together (for days before!) sitting around a big table, making candies, breads, cookies, etc. I love that we could recreate this for our wedding <3
They were the perfect wedding favor, and they looked so cute!
(The wedding planners mixed up the signs we made…putting the “Bem Casados” sign with the brigadeiros….oops! Didn’t stop anyone from eating them!)
- 1 14-ounce can of sweetened condensed milk
- 3 tablespoons cocoa powder
- 1 tablespoon butter
- chocolate sprinkles, for coating brigadeiros
- Heat a saucepan over medium heat. Add the butter, heat until melted.
- Add the condensed milk and cocoa powder. Stir continuously with a spoon until thick, and until you can draw a line in the chocolate mixture and see the bottom of the pan. (about 10 minutes).
- Remove from heat, and pour mixture onto a plate. Let cool about 10 minutes.
- Using your hands (you might have to grease them to keep the chocolate from sticking!), roll the chocolate into 1" balls, then roll in the sprinkles. If it becomes too sticky to work with, you can stick it in the fridge for a few minutes to let it harden a bit.