Nearshore Americas

Rio's Best Coxinha

Coxinhas can be put into the same food group as empanadas — but they are Brazilian and better. In Portuguese, the word literally translates to “little thigh” since their shape is meant to resemble a chicken leg. The default coxinha (pronounced “koh SHEEN yah”) is a potato dough pastry filled with shredded chicken and a cream cheese that is battered in breadcrumbs and deep fried. It is delicious and you can find them throughout the country. Rio de Janiero has many of the best, and Brazil Vibes echoes my choice for the best: Bar de Gema. The coxinha chef there is widely regarded as the best in the city, and as the website’s review says, Bar de Gema’s “coxinha is creamier than most, made with extra milk, and served with a small cup of hot peppers.” When it comes to street food, a good coxinha is tough to beat.

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Jared Wade

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