I often say that I don’t care  much for sweets, and visitors to the Bewitching likely realize that for me, savory stuff tops the sweets by a long, long margin.  But,  for many years I heard comments about my youngest niece’s cake skills (a gene that must have skipped my generation!), and now, finally, I had a chance to savor one of her specialties: a traditional Brazilian cornmeal cake, called “bolo de fuba’.”  Her recipe has two interesting additions:  a farmer’s type cheese and shredded coconut.  Together, they produce a cake that´s moist, with just the right sweetness.  If I had to describe it in a single word, that word would be irresistible.

(adapted from Na Cozinha com Carolina)

a little butter and flour to prepare the pan
4 eggs
3 cups of milk
1 + ½ cups sugar
2 Tbs butter
2 Tbs flour
1 cup cornmeal
100 g (4 oz) sweetened, shredded coconut
1 cup farmers type fresh cheese, coarsely grated
1 Tbs baking powder

Heat the oven to 350F. Prepare a round, medium size, ring cake type pan by buttering the inside and adding a small amount of flour, tapping off the excess.

Add all ingredients to a blender and mix until they form a smooth batter. Pour the batter into the prepared pan, and bake for 45 to 50 minutes, until a cake tester or toothpick comes out clean.

Let the cake cool for 10 to 15 minutes before unmolding. Serve it warm or cold.  


to print the recipe, click here

Comments:  Bolo de fuba´ originates in Africa, in fact the name fubá  means flour in kimbundu (spoken in Angola),  but in Brazil it is used exclusively for what in the US is known as cornmeal.  The Portuguese, main colonizers of Brazil, expanded the use of cormeal into all kinds of sweet and savory concoctions, including breads, as their famous “broa.” 

Bolo de fuba´ is the type of cake one would expect to be served with a nice cup of coffee or tea in the middle of the afternoon, or at breakfast to start the day on a good vibe.  As you can see from the photo below, this cake bakes in three distinct layers, a cornmeal cakey component on top, a creamy center, and the coconut flakes in the base.

Raquel´s version is the best I´ve ever had, making me lose all my composure and restraint, going back for another tiny sliver, and another, and another, until she could not take it anymore and said “why don´t you just cut a real slice and get it over with?”   Wisdom comes in many forms.  Lesson learned. 😉

ONE YEAR AGO:  Hidden Treasure

TWO YEARS AGO: Avocado Three Ways

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  1. Oh! Look at those slices of cake! I’m not a big fan of cakes myself (can’t make them and don’t usually care to eat much other than a bite or two), but those slices look so good! Cheese!!!!! I hope you’re having a wonderful trip!


    • I can see some graduate students very happy next week when I make this cake for them. I plan to buy some shredded coconut here in Brazil and take with me just for this cake.


    • I sure did. I suspect my niece has some hidden agenda to fatten me up – she brough a coconut cake yesterday, and I MUST get that recipe too. Amazing cake, simple but delicious.


  2. What an interesting variation on traditional cornmeal bread and it looks oh so good. Love the inclusion of coconut and the cheese – big yum factor! I can understand going back for more (and more, and so on …:))


    • Believe it or not, we had yet another fuba cake at a friend´s home a couple of days ago. IN her version, she added quite a bit of cinnamon. I thought I had died and gone to heaven. There will be a lot of running in Oklahoma in my near future. Well, I am still exercising quite a bit here, but not enough to fight the excesses, I´m afraid!


    • It is pure heaven! And I am starting to debate if I really don~´t have a sweet tooth. Let´s say that for someone who doesn´t care for sweets I´ve been indulging quite a bit lately


    • You know, I want to try it with Mexican cheeses available in the US and will report back on the best type. If you want to try it soon, I advise you to get one of those Cotija type, not too wet, not too dry. I bet it will work well.

      But I intend to make it next week and add a comment to this post about it.


    • THanks, Cindy! We leave tomorrow, today is our last day here, feijoada for lunch at my niece´s home with the whole family, and a dinner with two couples. Busy busy busy day. But a lot of fun for sure!


  3. adorei saber que a sobrinha é a boleira da familia. o bolo realmente é muito bom, se a receita for boa e a boleira tiver boa mão, fica perfeito como este da foto. lindo.bjs


  4. That looks delicious. I’m printing it out for a close friend of ours who spent time in Brazil with the Peace Corps. He will love it.


    • I bet he had some types of bolo de fuba’ while living in Brazil – this one was particularly nice, I am trying to get the recipe for the other type we had during our stay, with cinnamon. Was very delicious too…


      • I just came back from Colombia and I think the cheese that best resembles farmer cheese which is easily available in the UK is Greek feta or perhaps cottage cheese which has been strained. Masa is quite difficult to find here, I picked up fuba in a big chain supermarket in the hope that I would be able to make arepas from it – your cake looks like a delicious option – Imwill be making it to celebrate my son’s arrival home next week. Loving this blog 🙂


        • Thank you so much! I like the idea of straining cottage cheese, brilliant! Glad you are enjoying the Bewitching, I must say the best decision I made was starting this blog, I have so much fun keeping it going, it is a hobby that I did not expect to enjoy so much when I started almost 5 years ago… time flies… time flies…


  5. This looks delicious! I want to try the recipe, but I’m going to have to get an appropriate pan. Can you give me an idea of how big a medium-sized ring pan is? Thanks!


  6. I made this cake last month and again today. It’s very tasty… but both times it seems as though it’s way too liquidy. It does not cook in 50 minutes… I had to leave it in for 1 hour and 20 minutes, and it still isn’t quite set. It seems more like a spoon bread or polenta than a cake.
    I was wondering if maybe there isn’t a typo in the amounts? Is it really supposed to be so much liquid to so little flour??
    Once it cools, it does work, even with such a small flour to liquid ratio… but is it meant to be this way?
    Well, either, it’s great and the whole family loved it! Thanks!


    • Hi, Natalie

      I confirmed with my niece in Brazil (that’s why it took me a little while to get back to you), and all measurements are right. Now, I STILL have to make this cake with ingredients found here in the US to check if by any chance they are behaving differently – that’s quite possible. A friend of mine made it and told me he thought it was a bit too liquid, but ended up ok. Maybe some adjustments would be necessary.

      I hope I can do it in the next couple of weeks, and will get back to you with my “results” 😉

      glad you like the cake anyway, but maybe there is room for improvement to make it perfect!


    • Natalie, I hope you will see this reply, but I am going to blog again on this cake in the near future

      It turns out that the best way to prepare this is with “masa harina” instead of cornmeal. That is the closest ingredient to the grind available in Brazil

      I finally got this from a Brazilian blogger friend of mine who lives in California and cooks a ton of Brazilian food here in the US.

      Hope this helps you out!


  7. Provei a receita , deliciosa. Experimente a versão mineira , da Serra da Canastra :use coalhada e d~e o ponto com muito queijo ralado. O queijo não pode ser parmesão ,vc vai tem que procurar um mais parecido com o de Minas meia-cura.Se não tem coalhada usa yogurt natural. ele tem que ganhar um tempo a mais no forno pra ficar com uma casquinha bem morena e crocante .É um bolo broa , que fazemos sem receita fixa, assim bem random.Acho que o uso da coalhada lembra coisa de ingleses e irlandeses. A palavra Broa é uma corruptela de Bread.As vezes nos mineiros somos meio britânicos , why! ( uai?) kkkkk


    • Oi, Doris

      se voce puder me mandar a receita, sei que nao tem receita fixa, mas se voce me der uns “pointers” eu quero fazer sim. Voce acha que daria para usar buttermilk como coalhada?



  8. Pingback: Loafing – Dangerspouse

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