several chicken croquettes on a plate

Coxinha De Frango (History & Origins)

Coxinha De Frango originated in Sao Paulo Brazil and is now embedded in their food culture. Several centuries ago they were being served in bakeries, cafe’s and social gatherings in cities like Moema Sao Paulo and Curitiba Parana and slowly spread through out Brazil and around the world.

The exact origins of the famous coxinha, like many other things in Brazil, are unclear. One of the more romantic & creative theories dates back to the 19th century & Brazil’s imperial period. 

The whole story goes that one of the sons of the great Princess Isabel, the daughter of Emperor at that time ‘Pedro II’, refused to eat any other food other than fried chicken drumsticks, until one evening, at one of the majestic family’s farms in the state of São Paulo, they ran out of the child’s favorite dish. 

In a bind, the family’s personal cook decided to shred the meat from other parts of the chicken, and form it into the kind of a drumstick, & fry it. The boy is said to have loved the new invention, and the young boy’s grandmother, Empress Teresa Cristina, ordered the snack be served in all royal kitchens around the country. 

Another famous theory states that the coxinha recipe is in fact French, because its nothing more than a differently-shaped kind of chicken croquette. However, the most believable story is that during the industrial revolution in São Paulo in the late 19th century & early 20th century, the delicious coxinha was created as a cheaper alternative to the normal fried chicken drumsticks that were sold outside the city’s factories.

Variations Of The Coxinha Snack

Several variations of this original snack are becoming more prevalent in the food industry today – for example, the coxinha mineira, that has the filling of maize, so named because maize is deemed a culinary culture and tradition in the state of Minas Gerais, as well as some areas where the caipira & sertanejo dialects are spoken. 

round Brazilian chicken croquettes

Traditional Methods For Cooking The Brazilian Croquette (Coxinha)

1. In any medium pot, heat the olive oil, and then sauté garlic and onions until soft & brown. Then add shredded chicken, some salt, & paprika (or cayenne pepper). And Stir to incorporate. 

2. Then transfer the mixture into a simple bowl, add some cream cheese and parsley. Mix well. 

3. In the same small pot, add butter, chicken broth, & bit of milk. Bring to a boil. Stir in flour until the dough is formed. 

4. Transfer dough to any flat surface. Knead the dough while it is still warm, but not hot. 

5. Pinch a piece of dough, with approximately the size of a large egg, & roll into a ball. Using your hands, flatten the whole dough & spoon filling into the center. Wrap the mixed dough into a pear shape and ensure that there aren’t any holes. 

6. While heating a small pot of oil to 350˚F/180˚C, dredge the prepared dough in egg and panko, and then deep-fry till golden brown & cooked through. 

7. Drain on a towel, or wire rack & serve immediately. (Go Here to see Recipe)

Where To Find Coxinha in the United States

The popularity of the delicious Brazilian cuisine has exploded recently in the whole of USA. It is no wonder Brazilian chain restaurants and hotels such as Fogo de Chao, Texas de Brazil, Rodizio Grill have spread this dish throughout the country at a frantic pace. 

All of the restaurants do a great job of serving up classic Brazilian foods and cuisines like churrasco, feijoada & moqueca. However, if you are lucky enough to explore an individually owned local Brazilian restaurant in the local area chances are you will be treated to some authentic Brazilian fare.

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