Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Brazilian Chicken Pie



        There was this episode in TopChef that threw the contestants into an elimination challenge where they had to cater for a diplomatic event. Each of the chefs had to represent a traditional cuisine of a certain country (which was determined by the draw) and one of the participants got confused when he had got Brazil. At that point I questioned myself what do I know about Brazilian cuisine? Frankly speaking, absolutely nothing. During my not so long-term culinary journey I came across only one recipe of a dish that claimed to be Brazilian. Although, I somehow doubt it that it’s a truly authentic dish often cooked in the houses somewhere in Rio de Janeiro or San Paolo, nothing to say of the rural areas of the country. I guess when I eventually meet someone from Brazil, my first question will be about this pie (ok, it will be the second question, right after the one about the national obsession with several-hundred-episode TV series). 

Recipe adapted from “The Recipe Collection” magazine


1 ½ cups plain flour
125 ml milk
1 egg
60 ml canola oil
1 ½ tsp baking powder
a pinch of salt

1 chicken breast (about 200 gm), boiled
1 onion, finely chopped
2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
300 gm tomatoes, skinned and diced
100 gm black olives, pitted and sliced
100 gm green peas
100 gm sweet corn kernels
1 egg
2 tbsp mayonnaise
a small bunch of parsley, finely chopped
salt and pepper to taste

1 egg, beaten (for brushing the pie)


  1. For the dough, sieve flour together with baking powder and salt. In another bowl, whisk eggs with milk and oil. Gradually add the flour mixture and knead into a ball. Leave, covered, for at least half an hour at room temperature to rest.
  2. For filling, heat some oil in a pan and sauté onion and garlic till golden brown. Add tomatoes and olives and cook for 10 minutes more (if the mixture dries out, add some water or stock). Allow to cool, stir in corn kernels, peas, parsley, salt and pepper. Taste to check the seasoning, and then add an egg mixed with mayonnaise.
  3. Preheat the oven to 200C. Line a 20cm round cake tin with a greased paper. Roll 2/3 of the dough into a circle and put into the prepared tin. Put the filling inside, roll the remaining dough and cover a pie. Seal the edges thoroughly and prick the top with fork to allow the steam to go out. Bake for 20 minutes, covered, then brush with an egg wash and, if necessary, prick the top again and bake for further 20 minutes or until golden brown in colour.


1.      There was no egg and mayonnaise in the original recipe, but the filling was a bit dry and didn’t stay together when cut through. Use only egg white for a lighter option.

2.      An egg wash for the top of the pie is, as always, just an option. You can skip it altogether or use some tea for that intense colour.



  1. I returned from Brazil exactly two weeks ago. And guess what.

    I had Chicken Pie. Twice. Once in Rio and once near Palmeira

    Thes was more on the dry side the crust is richer. Neither had mushrooms or any olives. I can't vouch for the Palm of Heart as it would be shredded they both had a few kernels of corn the second a bit of fresh peas. Still there seem to be a bit different tast to it I can't quite put my finger on. The mixture is tightly packed into the shell so it doesn't fall apart.

  2. Wow, Lynda! Thanks for sharing the experience from your trip! It's so exciting to hear about somebody visiting Brazil and tasting a real Brazilian pie! Wish I also had an opportunity to go to that country and to know more about their cuisine!


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