Brigadiers, also called Brazilian Fudge Balls, are Brazils most famous and favorite candy. Easy and delicious, they are a great treat for Valentines Day!
How do you make Brigadeiros?
Sweetened condensed milk is combined with cocoa powder and softened butter while heating. Stirring the mixture while heating allows it to thicken and reach the appropriate consistency. Watch the process to ensure your candy is at the right stage. Stage 1 | Stage 2.
After the candy has cooled briefly, you can enjoy a spoonful directly from the pan. The Brazilians even have a name for this, "Spoon Brigadeiros". While it's tempting to eat the whole batch this way, the the traditional method of making brigadeiros is to roll the mixture in chocolate vermicelli.
Yields: 24-36 Fudge Balls
1 can (14-oz) sweetened condensed milk
2-4 tablespoons cocoa powder
2 tablespoons butter, softened
1 tablespoon vanilla
1 cup chocolate vermicelli or colored sprinkles, grated chocolate, coconut, chopped nuts, crushed toffee, etc.*
Combine sweetened condensed milk, cocoa and softened butter in a medium saucepan. Over medium heat, stirring constantly to keep from burning on the bottom, cook until mixture is thick (about 5-8 minutes). The candy is ready when you see the bottom of the pan for couple of seconds before it flattens out and fills in again (see links above to watch a video of this stage).
Remove pan from heat and stir in vanilla. Spread on a lightly buttered plate and cool until cold enough to handle. You may cool overnight if desired.
Lightly butter hands, roll into 24-36 balls, then roll in chocolate sprinkles, chopped nuts, grated chocolate, etc.
Where did Brigadeiros come from?
Brigadiers were created in Brazil in the 1940’s and named after a very good-goodlooking general named Brigadier General, Eduardo Gomes. In 1945 he ran for president with the slogan “vote for the most handsome and single brigadier". It is said that Brigadiers were used as a fund raiser for his campaign. Even though he didn’t win, Brigadiers are still very popular candy in Brazil; served at reunions, birthday parties, and family gatherings. This simple candy can be found in Gourmet Brigadier Boutique shops, with 100 different gourmet flavors.