Brazil Food Culture

BrazilFood Culture

BrazilFood Culture


Braziland China are among the largest countries in the world both in sizeand population. The two countries are rich in cultural beliefs andcustoms not forgetting in their foods. In Brazil, the main food isfeijoada or meat stew. In China, wheat is the main staple in thenorth while rice forms the main food in the southern. In Brazil, foodhas a medicinal value particularly with the Bauhinia forficate whichis considered vegetable insulin for diabetics. In china, there are alot of foods used for therapeutic purposes. Basically five flavors offoods are considered necessary for the body functioning. They includesweet, bitter, hot, salty and sour.

TheBrazilian religious festival is the June Festival which is done tocelebrate the saints. During this period, foods eaten are corn based.In china, the Chinese New year is a religious festival celebrated byevery Chinese. Oysters, fish, and oranges are eaten. Fish signifyprosperity oysters signify fortune while tangerines signify a sweetlife in the Chinese culture.

Brazilianfoods are cooked by the mother of the home like in China. Food inBrazil includes heavy lunch while dinner is light. It is a familytime to have fun. Dinner offers a family with an opportunity to catchup with each other. In china, food is served at once. People expressenjoying food.

Inthe U.S most Brazilian population is found in East Newark, New Jerseywhile Chinese population is concentrated in San Francisco California.Brazilian males shake hands while women kiss each other. In Chinagreetings are important and the older person is the first to begreeted. Ultimately, the Chinese and Brazilian cultures have varioussimilarities. However, Brazil culture is diversified as a result ofthe several groups in the country.

1.What food are indicative of Brazil culture?

Thenational dish in Brazil is known as feijoada (meat stew). The stew isusually served with white rice, orange salad, kale, and groundmanioc. It is a heavy stew of black beans, pork, beef or other meats(Bosrock,1997).However, there are several types of foods that are identified withthe different cultures in Brazil.

Foodforms an important aspect of the Chinese culture. In northern China,wheat is the main food used to make noodles and dumplings. SouthernChina, rice is more prevalent as a staple food rice noodles andzhongzi are common. Food in the south of china is spicy than northernfoods.

a.Identify Core, Secondary and Peripheral foods

Themain foods in Brazil include black beans, rice and manioc (a potatolike root). Breakfast includes coffee and snacks while lunch is heavyincluding meat stew and rice. Dinner is usually light with soups,vegetables, and salads (Bosrock,1997).

InChina, depending on the region, rice or wheat may be the main food.Sea foods are also important in the Chinese foods. All parts ofplants are used in making foods including roots, leaves and fruits.

2.Identify and describe (in detail) the culture and the concepts ofmeals and meal cycles.

a.Who, Where, When and how is food normally prepared?

InBrazilian families, food is prepared by the mother or daughters inthe family. It is prepared from the scratch although frozen foods arebecoming popular for most workers.

Likein Brazil, Chinese food is prepared by the mother of the home.

b.Where, when, and how is food normally consumed?

Dinnertime is family time when members of the family catch up and sharespecial moments. Dinner is usually light but lunch is the main meal(McPhee, 2011).

Chinesefoods start with soup or appetizers. Soup is regarded as a beverageand is the only liquid served at meal time. Instead of a main meal,several different foods are served. Food is served at once as andeaten in communal. No individual servings in Chinese family.

c.Who usually share the meals?

Foodis usually shared at the table. Usually people serve themselves likein buffet. Food is shared by the mother of the family just like inBrazil. However, it is served in communal.

3.Identify therapeutic uses of food and wine (be specific).

a.What, (if any) home or therapies involving food and herbs areutilized? Why?

Severalherbs are used for cure including Bauhinia forficate which isconsidered vegetables insulin for diabetics.

Chinesehave medicinal cuisine in a therapeutic art called shiliao Chinesefood therapy. Healing herbs of parts of an animal are added to foodfor therapeutic purposes (Bosrock,1997).The way food is cooked is important to achieve therapeuticobjectives. To balance the body, people are recommended to includeall five food flavors like sour, bitter, sweet, hot and salty.

4.Describe uses of food and wine within the main religion of the group(be specific).

Themain religion in Brazil is Roman Catholic which was brought by thePortuguese in the 1500. June Festivals (Festivas Juninas). Thefestivals are held in honor of saints in the Roman Catholic. Duringthis period, the foods eaten include corn and corn based dishes likecorn cake and corn pudding (McPhee, 2011).

InChina, the Chinese New year is the most important festival and comesin January or in February. Oysters, fish, oranges and tangerines areusually eaten. The most common dessert is Neen gow a new year’scake which is dipped egg and pan fried (Parkinson, n.d).

a.What is symbolic meaning of food known to the culture?

In Brazil, red meat is associatedwith social hierarchy in the Brazilian society.

In China, different foods bearcultural meaning. For example Oystersare eaten during dinner of the New Year as people believe they bringfortune (Kwintessential, n.d). Oranges and tangerines symbolize asweet life, while fish symbolizes prosperity.

5.Identifying the area within San Francisico or the Bay Area with thelargest population (i.e. Japantown)

EastNewark, New Jersey has the highest percentage of Brazilians in theUnited States.

SanFrancisco California has the largest Chinese population making 21percent of the population.

6.Identify food service styles.

InBrazil, food is usually served in a buffet like style. One choosesthe foods they want to eat and put it in a plate. It is then weighedto establish its cost.

a.Identifying table appointments used on the dinner table.

Tableappointments in Brazil consist of silverware, glassware, and linen.This is similar to the Chinese table appointments.

b.Explain practices of cultural etiquette.

Portugueseis the language spoken by almost the whole population. In Brazil, menshake hands while women kiss each other. A woman wishing to shakehands with a man should extend her hand first. Gifts in Brazil areconsidered a very important aspect. Orchids make a great giftalthough purple ones are discouraged as it symbolizes morning(McPhee, 2011). Black color and handkerchiefs are associated withfunerals and should be avoided. Once a gift is received, it is openedimmediately by the recipient.

Ifinvited for dinner or party or gathering, one is expected to be latefor about 30 minutes to one hour. The dressing mode is with flair andcasual dress is considered formal unlike in other countries.

Chineseare very closely knitted people. Greetings are formal in Chinesesociety and the oldest person is the first to be greeted. One looksto the ground when greeting someone. For gifts, a food basket makes agreat gift since Chinese love food (Kwintessential, n.d). Flowers areassociated with funerals and should not be given as gifts. Four is anumber associated with bad luck and eight is the luckiest, hence donot give anything in fours.

Wheneating, Chinese prefer eating outside than in homes. If invited athome, it is a great honor. One must arrive in time and bringing apresent for the host is common (Kwintessential, n.d). Eat in a mannerthat suggests you are enjoying food. Chopsticks should be used. Thehost begins eating first and offers the first toast. One is expectedto try everything offered to them.


Bosrock,M. (1997). SouthAmerica: a fearless guide to international communication andbehavior.St. Paul, Minn: International Education Systems.

Kwintessential.(n.d). China- Language, Culture, Customs and Etiquette.Retrieved December 15, 2014).

McPhee,R. (2011 May, 15). Brazilian food and customs. The Foodie BugleJournal. December 15, 2014).

Parkinson(n.d). Planningand Serving a Chinese Meal.Retrieved December 15, 2014).