Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Festa de Coxinhas!

      A couple of weeks ago, we had a coxinha party at one of the church members' house. It's kind of difficult to explain exactly what a coxinha is.   They are meat-filled deep fried manioc teardrops. They take a LOT of work and a LOT of time!  The women started to work on them at 1:30 in the afternoon, and we didn't get to eat until after 9:00!  

      The manioc is what took most of the time.  Manioc is a root that is used in a variety of ways here in Brazil and in other parts of the world.  It can be fried, boiled, mashed, etc. 
      For our coxinhas, 20 kilos (that's 44 lbs!) of manioc first had to be peeled, which involves removing a bark-like outer layer.  Then it was washed and chopped into smaller sections.  After that it was placed in several pressure cookers and cooked until it softened enough to be mashed. 
      We started mashing it with forks, but it was too hard, so we had to switch to mashing it with our fingers :) 

      Then there were many veggies that had to be chopped and diced to add to the meat when it was being cooked.  (We made chicken and hamburger coxinhas.)  

    By the time that everything was ready to be assembled, it was already after 6:00. Many of the men had arrived from their jobs at that time, and came to help.  

   Some garlic fried in oil was added to the big tub of manioc, and folded in by hand. Then it was time to form the coxinhas.  We started with a ball of mashed manioc, and formed it into a bowl.  Then we added some of the chicken or hamburger mixture to it. This is where it got kind of humorous, because everyone, (men and women included), thought that they had the best technique for forming the coxinhas.  :) 

      The coxinhas then had to be closed at the top, which formed the point.  Then they were dusted with flour, and ready to be fried!
      They were deep fried in oil, and placed in a styrofoam box to keep warm until they were all finished.  In all, we made over 200 coxinhas!       

    As soon as the "okay" was given, and the chow-down began.  The kids eagerly lined up on the floor and accepted their first coxinha.  (Poor kids were STARVING by now, because remember, I said we didn't get to eat until AFTER 9:00!)   I'm not sure how many coxinhas were left over, but there weren't very many.  Mahalia and I shared about 4 coxinhas, but one of the men ate 15 of them! 
      I guess the best way to describe a coxinha is: meat wrapped in mashed potatoes and then deep fried.  The manioc was still soft, but had a nice crispy outer layer. 
      Now I understand why they only do this about once a year!  It was a LOT of work, but it was a lot of FUN!  

Friday, May 11, 2012

Omar's First Portuguese Sermon

   This past Wednesday night Omar got to preach in Portuguese for his first time.  Although not perfect, after eight or nine months of language school, he was happy to have this opportunity.  This is a clip from the middle of the message.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Óliver - People of Brazil

   We really enjoyed getting to know Óliver and his family at Family Camp earlier this year.  Both Mahalia and Johnathan got to play with him quite a bit and we got to visit with his parents a good bit as well. 


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