Discovering food moments in Brazil with our Culture AI’s help

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Photo by Mariano Diaz on Unsplash

Whether you’re a foodie or not, it’s impossible to deny the food presence in our lives.

MasterChef, Top Chef, Bake Off and Mestre do Sabor (Master of Flavour) are just some of the popular cooking reality shows in Brazil. Brazilians are hotly enthusiastic and involved in watching these shows, with Twitter users always making comments and engaging in debates (and outrage!) online whenever they’re on air.

If you’ve traveled to Brazil before or have Brazilian friends, you’d know that the country’s cuisine is very unique. Think of cuisine influenced by African, Indigenous, and Portuguese food, and there you have it: Brazilian food!

Due to its continental size, the country has very distinct regional dishes (e.g. moqueca, polenta) and a variety of spices used in its cuisine, including coriander, laurel leaf, basil, and rosemary.

While a Brazilian breakfast may seem similar to other countries (as it often includes bread and coffee), a Brazilian lunch often points out to distinctive aspects of the country’s cuisine. Culturally, lunch is the main meal in the country, with Brazilians even packing at home to take it to work (marmitas). A very traditional meal during lunchtime includes beans, rice, farofa (toasted cassava or cornflour mixture), and a protein complement.

Brazilian desserts use a lot of nuts, milk derivatives, and also local fruits like açaí, cupuaçu, mango, papaya, cashew, or guava. Some of these desserts may even have different names in different regions, even though they still contain the same ingredients.

Food and Religion

Some traditional foods have religious value. As an example, ‘‘abara’’(a dish made with grilled kidney beans), ‘‘acaraje’’(a dish made with grated French beans fried in palm oil) and ‘‘vatapa’’(a dish made from bread, shrimp, coconut milk, finely ground peanuts, and palm oil mashed into a creamy paste) are always cooked as offerings to the Gods in the Afro-Brazilian religion called Candomble.

Food and fellowship: What is Pos Culto?

Here at Quilt.AI, we collected social data to study a popular Brazilian food moment presenting a 65.8% growth rate: the Pos Culto.

Religion plays a big role in Brazilians’ life (90% of Brazilians are religious), even influencing their moments of socialization. The ‘‘pos culto’’ refers to the time after church, when people gather to eat together, bonding with others who share the same faith, part of the same religious community.

When they post photos of these gatherings online, they tend to show off the social aspect of being a religious person, showing that they can let loose a little after service and have fun too.

We also analyzed pictures of Pos Culto with our proprietary Culture AI tools and found that happiness was the most detected emotion (people were constantly smiling in pictures!), followed by sensuality, not because they were wearing revealing clothes, but because people in the pictures we analyzed all seemed to put an effort to dress up to feel their best self while bonding with other people.

The photos also revealed that these gatherings usually happen at places that offer fast foods such as pizza, burgers, and sfiha. It really makes sense, as these foods are quite affordable, tasty, and easy to satisfy the taste buds of most people. They also bring a sense of comfort and are quite filling, perfect for a group gathering.

The Online Brazilian Food Community: Some of our favorite channels

Food YouTubers have a strong presence in Brazil, with nine of them having over 1 million subscribers. The most popular cooking channel in Brazil belongs to vlogger Tata Pereira, with a whopping 3.5 million subscribers. She gained an audience for posting easy-to-make recipes, which allows even the clumsiest of us to attempt cooking.

Some of these famous YouTubers like to innovate in their videos, putting a twist on traditional recipes. Danielle Noce (2.5 M subscribers) for instance, turned two different foods (panettone and coxinha, which is a Brazilian fried chicken ball) into one: mixing the best aspects of them (the size of panettone with the delicious filling of coxinha), to create the ‘‘Coxintone’’.

Similarly, another famous channel, Menino Prendado (4.6 M subscribers) teaches how to make 4 liters of ice cream with only one juice sachet, showing his innovative and practical take on a recipe that most people don’t even make, but buy ready-to-eat.

And, now that we’re a few weeks away from Christmas, here’s a recipe some of our teammates have been mastering:

Check out more of our blogs at quilt.ai/magazine :)

Quilt.AI creates culturally intelligent AI products to achieve impact at scale. https://quilt.ai

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