Well, it appears we’re having a carb-heavy kind of week. We do love our bread. We haven’t shown you everything…there was also pasta on the menu this week. I guess there are just weeks like that. It’s all good, though. Everything in moderation—and things seem to balance out somehow.
Nelson went back to his book of traditions for this one. This is perhaps the most traditional bread baked on Pico Island in the Azores. This bread is served in homes, restaurants, and at festivals. It’s commonly served with fish, homemade sausage, and other meats.
While corn bread is made and served all over Portugal, and beyond, as far as we know (through experience and some research), this one is slightly different. It seems this style is typical of Pico Island, specifically.
Although the inside looks pretty much the same, this type has a touch of sweetness. Also, the exterior of typical corn bread is normally not smooth, while this one has a smooth and shiny golden crust.
Daniel is our pickiest eater in this house, but he looks forward to every kind of bread Nelson makes—this one is no exception. We’ve called him our little bread monster. I think it makes Nelson proud to see his kids enjoying his traditional food so much. Who can blame him? It’s a pretty special thing. Thanks Nelson 🙂
We hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we do.
Azores Cornbread (Pão de Milho)
This delicious cornbread recipe is straight from the Azores islands of Portugal, more specifically the Island of Pico. It's likely the most traditional type of bread enjoyed across the Island at people's homes, restaurants and festivals. This cornbread is different from the cornbread made in other areas of the country.
Author: Nelson Cardoso
Recipe type: Bread
Serves: 4 Breads
- 2¼ tsp traditional active dry yeast
- ½ tsp sugar
- ¼ cup warm water
- 2 cups cornbread mix (note: I find mine at the Bulk Barn in Canada. You can use also use Semolina flour)
- ½ tsp coarse salt
- 2 cups boiling water
- 6 cups all purpose flour
- 2 tbs butter at room temperature
- ¼ cup of sugar
- 1¾ cups room temperature water
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1 egg
- 4 round 8" baking aluminum foil plates
- In a small bowl (I use a small soup bowl), add the yeast, ½ tsp sugar, ¼ cup warm water and mix. Set aside for roughly 15 minutes.
- In a large bowl, add the cornbread mix and coarse salt.
- Pour the boiling water over the cornbread mix and stir well with a heavy wooden spoon until everything is incorporated. Let cool.
- While the cornbread mix is cooling, add the all purpose flour, butter and sugar to a large stand mixer bowl. Add the yeast mix over the flour and start the mixer on slow with the dough hook attachment.
- Slowly pour in the 1¾ cups of water into the stand mixer bowl. The flour will start to incorporate with the water. If not already on this setting, change the stand mixer to the kneading setting, 2 on our KitchenAid.
- Run the mixer for about 5 minutes.
- Go back to the slightly cooled cornbread mix and kneed for about 3 minute. Form a ball.
- Add the cornbread mix to the stand mixer bowl and keep kneading for another 4 to 5 minutes.
- Grease a large bowl with a tsp of olive oil.
- Remove the dough from stand mixer and form into a ball. Place the dough in the greased bowl and cover with a tea towel and a blanket to keep it warm.
- Let the dough rise for 1.5 hours.
- Punch down the dough and pour it onto a cutting board.
- With a dough scraper or knife, divide the dough into four equal portions.
- Mold each dough piece into a ball (pinch the bottom to clear the seams) and place on the plates.
- Cover with a tea towel and let rise for another 30 minutes.
- Turn on the oven and set to 400 ºF.
- Place one rack in the middle and the other on the bottom.
- After the 30 minutes of rising, beat the egg yolk and half the egg white in a small bowl.
- Brush each dough with the egg wash.
- Place the plates in the oven. If you can't fit all four on the middle rack, place two in the middle and two on the bottom.
- Bake for 40 minutes.
- Remove the bread from the oven and let cool on cooling racks before serving.
[…] had fresh cheese at the table for breakfast. I would typically have it with toast, sweet bread or cornbread (as seen in this post’s picture). Fresh cheese is also often served at Portuguese restaurants with crusty bread as an appetizer. I […]
[…] I thought they might appreciate. I made Portuguese Collard Greens and Beef Soup (sopa de couve), Azores Cornbread (Pão de Milho do Pico) and Azores-Style Fresh Cheese (Queijo […]