For our fifth takeaway Sunday lunch from Pau Brasil on Mount Pleasant, Reading during social-distancing and the lockdown, we chose shredded beef and cassava casserole, served with the white beans, rice and greens. We are thoroughly enjoying the opportunity to eat our way through a range of Brazilian dishes.
Cassava is native to South America and was introduced to Africa in the sixteenth century. In 2018 world production of cassava was 278 million tonnes. Nigeria produced 59.5 million tonnes and Brazil, the fourth largest producer, 17.6 million tonnes. If not prepared properly cassava can be toxic as it contains cynaide; some varieties are more toxic than others.
As well as providing the carbohydrate in the delicious rich casserole, cassava flour is added as a crunchy side dish adding a little bit of magic.
The café can no longer provide a sit-down service as the Government has instructed restaurants to close because of the coronavirus epidemic. It remains open as a takeaway and shop and this is really appreciated at this time.
We picked up a few typical Brazilian and Portuguese products with our takeaway to try out at home and hope to be able to share with you our attempts at preparing Pão de Quiejo soon.
Pau Brasil is at 89 Mount Pleasant, Reading, RG1 2TF, and they recommend that you phone in advance on 0118 975 2333 to place an order to reduce waiting times. Only one customer is allowed in at a time to maintain a safe environment; space in the shop is limited.
Pau Brasil also now has a website and online shop.
Opening times are 11.30am to 5pm from Tuesday to and closed on Monday.
NHS staff can collect a free coffee or hot drink.