Churrasco is a Brazilian barbecue which is enjoyed throughout Europe, America and Latin American countries. “Churrasco” is a Spanish and Portuguese term which refers to beef or other grilled meats. The ingredients may vary from country to country. But beef and grilled meats are the main ingredient of the churrascos prepared in Latin American countries of Uruguay, Argentina, Brazil, and Nicaragua. And the place where this dish is prepared is referred to as churrascaria or churrasqueria. Churrascaria mostly refers to the steak house. The grilled meat is served at churrascaria. There are no limitations as how much meat one can eat at churrascaria. At churrascaria waiters move around with grilled meat on skewers and they drop the meat at the customers platter on request. Due to this method of serving the churrascarias are known as churrascaria de rodízio. These churrascarias serve excellent salad buffets too. Churrascos are served during all special occasions. Over the course of years the churrascos have evolved to mark the rise of elegance and is often served with different kinds of sauces, salads and farofa.
History of Churrasco
The churrasco is the Brazilian method of barbecuing. It is believed that about 400 years ago, this method of barbecuing was developed by cowboys called gauchos who lived in the region of Rio Grande do Sul in Brazil. These cowboys invented the barbecue style which was different from the American style of barbecuing, which involved lots of smoke. The churrasco style evolved during the 16th and 17th centuries. By 1940 churrasco has become a popular style of barbecuing.
For the people of Rio Grande do Sul churrasco is much more than the method of grilling. Various restaurants have sprung up across the region which serves various types of churrascos. Dozens of restaurants have sprung up across the world which serves churrascos with same pride and flavor as the ones at Rio Grande de Sul.
Variations of Churrascos
Mostly Brazilian sausages and different cuts of pork tenderloin and beef are served at churrascarias.
• Brazil: Chicken hearts, turkey breasts, different cuts of meat filled with cheese are served.
• Guatemala: Churrascos are doused with chirmol, which is a red sauce prepared using onions and chopped tomatoes.
• USA: Chaurico or good spicy pork sausage, t –bone steaks, chicken thighs, sirloin strips, pork tenderloin, and pork chops are served.
• Dominican Republic: Skirt steak is served with chimichurri sauce.
• Chile: Thin cut of steak is served on a toasted sandwich. If the dish churrasco Italiano is served then it is accompanied by mayonnaise, tomatoes and avocados. But in case of churrasco a lo pobre the dish is served with French fries, caramelized onion and fried egg.
• Portugal: The churrasco is known as Frango de Churrasco, which is roasted using the hot red chili sauce. This dish is also popular in the countries like Canada, Venezuela, Australia, US and South Africa, where the Portuguese communities reside.
• Mozambique: Churrasco Moçambicano is the dish served in Mozambique.
• Spain: In some parts of the Spain, churrascos are prepared using beef spare ribs and grilled pork.
Health and Nutrition Facts Related to Churrasco
• Churrasco Beef: It is high in proteins, carbohydrates and fats.
• Churrasco (Polo Tropical): It serves proteins in copious amounts and miniscule amount of fats and proteins.
• Churrasco Steak: It serves proteins and fats in copious amounts.
• Contra Filé (Churrasco): It has high calorific values. It is rich source of proteins, but also serves fats in negligible amounts.
• Queijo Coalho Com Alho (Para Churrasco) (Crioulo): It serves fats and proteins in equal amounts.
Serving and Eating Churrasco
• Churrascos are normally enjoyed with a potato salad, green salads, tomato and heart of palm salad. The heart of palm salad is simply dressed with olive oils. Beetroot, chickpea salads, and beans are also served along with the dish.
Miscellaneous facts about Churrasco
• Fogo De Chao, Samba Brazilian steakhouse in Vancouver and Garden Grill in Shekou China are the popular churrascarias around the world.
• Brazilians prefer to go for inbuilt churrascarias which is made of brick and handsomely tiled and furnished.
• Unlike the American barbecues the churrasco gives the option of returning the skewer to the oven. And heat variations can be adjusted as per the cooking convenience.
• Grill is not found on Brazilian churrasco, so it is not easy to cook the minced meat, or fry an egg.
• Unlike the American barbecues the larger cuts of meats such as a whole chicken, whole tenderloin, and pork belly can also be used in the preparation of the dish.