It’s interesting how Central and South American dishes are similar to the Philippines, we may be far away geographically but the dishes and even traditions are nearly the same.  I started to notice that when I do my research on a certain history of a dish, I always thought before the only similar ones are the one that are tomato based dishes but to my surprise even the ones that I had thought to be an Authentic Filipino dishes like Adobo, Chicharon and Tocino are a remnant past of the Spanish era on those regions.  One good example is this one which is called Feijoada, it looks like it’s a cross between the Filipino Caldereta and Callos where low-grade meats like offal, pig’s trotter and beef bones are mixed with dried beans and cooked in Tomato Based stew.

Feijoada is a stew of different kinds of beans with different kinds of meat like beef and pork.  In Brazil, this is considered as their national dish and was brought to South America by the Portuguese and not the Spanish.  The name came from the word “feijão” which is a Portuguese word for “beans”, hence the beans in the stew.  Different beans are used depending on the region like Brazilians use black turtle beans, the Portuguese some region uses kidney beans and some used white beans.  I guess the beans don’t make a difference as they barely have taste.  Now it’s not just beans that differ on each region even the meats used are different, some use fresh pork and beef like in Portugal, some use offal and some even used processed meat like bacon and chorizos like they do in Brazil.  This dish originated as a “luxury” dish for the slaves during the Portuguese era, it was prepared with low quality ingredients (beans and grains) and left over salted pork from meat production plants the since then it became popular to the lower classes then became the National Dish.

Now to capture the essence of two versions in this recipe I will use 4 different beans and 5 different meats which is a combination of processed and fresh meats, and here is how it goes.


500g pork ribs, cut into 2 inch squares
500g beef top round, cubed
10 pcs chicharon (pork rind crackling)
3 slices shoulder bacon, sliced
4 pcs chorizo, sliced
1 large can 4 bean mix
8 pcs large vine tomatoes, chopped
1 litre beef stock
2 tbsp tomato paste
1 tsp dried oregano
2 tsp dried basil
1 large white onion, chopped
6 cloves garlic, minced
freshly ground black pepper
4 bay leaves
2 tsp cayenne pepper
2 oranges, sliced into wedges
2 stalks spring onions, chopped


  1. In a pot add oil and place on high heat; add pork ribs and beef top round and brown on all sides.  Once browned remove from pan then set aside.
  2. Now using the same pot sauté garlic and onions, once onions turn translucent place the tomatoes and stir fry for 2 minutes.
  3. Place the ribs, beef and bacon in the pot together with oregano, basil, bay leaves and cayenne pepper.  Bring to a boil then simmer for 45 minutes.
  4. In a pan, add oil then stir fry chorizo for roughly 2-3 minutes then remove from pan then set aside.
  5. Using the same pan place the drained 4 bean mix then stir fry for 2 minutes.  Now place 3/4 of the bean mix in the pot together with the chorizo and chicharon.  For the remaining 1/4 bean mix, mash it together with the remaining oil left on the pan, once it is all mashed add it to the pot with the meat then give it a good mix.
  6. Add the tomato paste on the pot then simmer for additional 20 minutes.
  7. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper, then serve with orange slices on the side and top it with spring onions.

18 Responses

  1. This sounds like a wonderfully rich and flavourful recipe.
    :-) Mandy

  2. saminacooks says:

    mmm this sounds so delicious..

  3. Babygirl says:

    When I come here, I get a history lesson in food and culture.. and let me tell you I LOVE IT. Seriously, I love learning about anything creative, new and exciting and your dishes are definitely exciting. Keep posting these wonderful recipes :)

  4. Nadia says:

    That photo is simply stunning! Beautiful dish!

  5. Christin@purplebirdblog says:

    Looks amazing, but that doesn’t surprise me! :)

  6. Rita says:

    It’s fantastically flavourful dish! I didn’t know about feijoada and it’s amazing to see how different cultures have the same roots! I didn’t know there was adobo in the Philippines: I thought it was Mexican. At least, my Mexican mother-in-law told me so (but she’s not a great cook… :P).

  7. solcristine says:

    This dish is much full of flavour and expensive ingredients indeed! But it ‘s so worth it! A freshly-squeeze orange juice on top blends all the flavour. Mmmm…yummy! :p

  8. certainly not for me, we at home are pork and beef free, but it looks nice.

  9. Bea Lima says:

    Although your dish seems delicious :) , the real Brazilian Feijoada (I’m Brazilian) is quite different. First, it’s made only with black beans. There is no tomato of any kind nor beef stock. Basil and oregano are a no-no too. We tradicionally add only garlic, a bay leaf, salt and peper to season the stew and water. Yours, I think, it’s closer to a pork version of chilli con carne, which is pretty awesome too.

    • rsmacaalay says:

      Thanks for the tip! I was brought up with this so my guess is that this was adjusted to the ingredients that we locally had before. Anyways now you told me about the real Brazilian version I cant wait to try that one out

    • Ola Bea! We made feijoada with red beans and we pretty much boiled everything… our stew was a bit runny, and the feijoada we see have thick broths. Did we do ours correctly? BTW the sausage we used are Filipino sausages so it had some Asian flavor

  10. Sarah says:

    Ok , this dish called “feijoada” was not by the Portuguese. This was a dish created by the African slaves in Brazil made of “leftover” food from their masters. I’m Brazilian…

    • rsmacaalay says:

      I agree from what you are saying, but what I was trying to say above was this was inspired from a Poruguese dish, like different stews around the world I noticed was always created by either slaves or locals of the country being colonized as the meats used are cheap cuts.

  11. My mom bought red beans and she had no idea what to do with them and I told her that she cook feijoada cause since March I’ve been telling her to cook. Yup it is true that this food was inspired by the slaves of Brazil but it’s really rich in flavor.

    We gave it a Pinoy twist by using chorizo de bilbao and strictly boiling everything. Sadly mama put too much salt, but the stew had a characteristic salty-sweet finish to it. Next time we’ll be making it with black beans and perfecting it a bit.

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