We are now travelling back to where it all began. We took the bus from Campo Grande to Sao Paulo, a raw city with a rough edge. When we were here the first time we met my friend Victor who I know through work. We promised him ,that when we got back to Sao Paulo, we would once again visit him.
And this time not for one evening, no. This time we would do it a little bit better. We also wanted to meet his wife and child. And how can we do this better than with a real Brazilian barbecue, called the ‘Churrasco’. Perfectly prepared by Victor. We did not needed to think about this twice.
We had to hurry a little bit to make it on time for the Churrasco. The bus tickets in Brazil always say the estimated time of arrival but they almost always don’t make it. We also had our share of bad luck with broken busses and this time it would mean, no churrasco for us. Luckily for us everything went fine and we arrived in Sao Paulo with only 30 minutes delay. From the bus station we took the subway, a train and a final taxi-ride to Victor’s parents-in-law house. We made it in time!
They live in a nice house in a good neighborhood of Sao Paulo and while we exited the cab we could smell the barbecue air. In an instance our mouth was watering. We where quite hungry after a long bus-ride. The food was great. Victor bought a loin from the cow and he cut it in big pieces. And then we really learned how to barbecue! He covered the pieces in big chunks of sea salt with rosemarie and placed them straight on the fire. Just sear the meat on both sides, slab the salt of the meat and it is time to eat! The meat melted on our tong and it was absolutely delicious!
During the churrasco we finally met Bianca, Victor’s wife, and Bernardo, Victor’s son who is almost one year old. He also invited his colleague and wife and together with his parents-in-law Pedro and Leila we had ourselves a proper Brazilian feast that went on to the end of the afternoon. During dinner it quickly became known that I love Brigadeiros (a chocolate bonbon covered with chocolate sprinkles). The best place to eat these was in the local mall, so off we went to the mall. 15 minutes later we had the best brigadeiros filled with anise, white chocolate, pistachio, caramel, etcetera, etcetera. The one was even better then the other.
After this nice desert we went to the office of Victor. We know each other from the FIRST LEGO League and he now develops educational materials with LEGO Education for schools in Brazil. The warehouse was filled to the ceiling with LEGO so a thru feast for the eye. There was also a game-room with table tennis which was begging us to play. I explained the game ‘Round the table’ and I think this is now a popular game during the afternoon breaks.
The family was so nice that we were still at Pedro and Leila during the evening. Everybody was getting hungry, so we ordered a couple of big-sized Sao Paulo pizza’s. The seize is one thing, but what really fills your belly is the fact that the crust is filled with molted cheese. Once again we were licking our fingers…
And the feast did not end there! We left for Paraty the next day but we were not allowed to leave before we had lunch with everybody again. It was fathers-day that Sunday and the whole family joined at Pedro’s house. And I mean the whole family! Uncles, aunts, nephews and nieces, brothers and sisters. All joined to eat the Feijoada.
The Feijoada comes from northern Brazil and was originally a dish prepared by African slaves. It is a Stew of pork and black beans served with rice. Slaves did not get the best pieces of the pork and in the old days they only got the leftovers like organs and eyes. Nowadays they use the better parts of the pig to prepare a Feijoada but ours also contained pig feet. We were spared the eyes and organs (luckily) but it tasted really good.
After lunch we took the bus to Paraty with our bellies filled again. We liked this little town so much three months ago that we returned once more. We rented a Bed&Breakfast (Chill-in Eco Suites) in the hills surrounding the town and this was a nice change compared with the last time. We spend one more day in the city center and the other day we just relaxed in the B&B where we shot some great photographs. This way we could travel to Rio de Janeiro and the Olympic Games well rested. But this will be our next story!.