Brazilian Coxinha Cake: Layers Of Chicken & Cream Cheese To Die For

Anyone who has never heard the word "coxinha" might suspect it's either the name of an ancient deity, an exotic disease, or possibly even a vile insult. But none of these are the case, as a coxinha is actually a Brazilian culinary treat wherein chicken is covered in dough, molded into a shape, battered, and finally fried. Coxinhas are a very popular snack in Brazil and date back to at least the 19th century, but now we've updated the finger food to bring you a truly epic masterpiece!

You'll need:

  • 1 lb chicken breasts
  • oil for frying
  • ½ onion, diced
  • 1 garlic clove, chopped
  • 1½ tbsp paprika powder
  • 32½ fl oz vegetable stock
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 17½ oz flour + more for breading
  • cream cheese
  • whisked egg
  • breadcrumbs

Here's how:

1. Cook the chicken breasts and then shred the meat using two forks.

2. Heat some oil in a pan, and add the shredded chicken breast meat, onion, garlic, and paprika seasoning. Briefly fry everything together and remove from heat.

3. In a separate pot, boil the vegetable stock with the butter and then reduce the heat before adding in the flour. This will creates a solid, kneadable dough.

4. Let the dough cool before continuing. Flour your work surface and remove about a quarter of the dough. Form this into a large, round, and thin "cake bottom." Repeat this step until you have three "cake bottoms."

5. Form eight small balls from the remaining dough. Stir the cream cheese and load it into a piping bag. Fill each dough ball with about a tablespoon of the chicken mixture and a dollop of cream cheese. Repeat with the rest of the dough balls. These will be the coxinhas.

6. Dip and roll both the dough balls and the "cake bottom" circles first in flour, then the egg wash, and finally in the breadcrumbs. Working in batches, fry everything in hot oil until golden brown.

7. Finally, you can assemble the cake. Lay the first "cake bottom" dough circle on a large plate and decorate it with small cream cheese pipings around the edge of the cake. Fill the inner area with half of the remaining chicken filling. Lay the next "cake bottom" on top, decorate with more cream cheese and chicken filling, and lay the final "cake bottom" on top.

8. Decorate the top of the third layer with more cream cheese piping around the edge. In the middle, garnish with a cream cheese spiral, starting from the center. Place the coxinhas on top.

You might be reminded of croquettes when making this mighty coxinha cake, and the two doughs are actually quite similar. Depending on the recipe, mashed potatoes can also be added to the dough, and the powerful result will leave a lasting impression — possibly in the form of greasy fingerprints around the dining table area.


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