Thursday, November 15, 2012

Cavacas, Fond Memories, And The Recipe!

Hello dear friends,

Thank you for stopping in.  I love when you come to visit!  Yesterday afternoon, I posted a photo of the "cavacas" I made on my facebook page. I was so overwhelmed with comments, questions, and requests for the recipe, I wanted to share it with all of you. 

First of all, for those of you who don't know, what is a cavaca? It's a traditional Portuguese confection whose origins date back as far as anyone can remember, but there is no documented proof of where or when it originated. 

Cavacas are simple to make and require very few ingredients, usually only eggs, flour and oil, as well as a rich sugar coating.  You can find these popular sweets all over Portugal in bakeries and markets. Although the ingredients don't vary much from one recipe to another, the baking technique, shapes and sizes can vary from one village to the next. 

Outside of Portugal, cavacas are sometimes called Portuguese popovers, as they are somewhat similar in texture.  Cavacas, however, are drier, contain oil and are much sweeter.   Yes, they are similar, but still very different. 

The recipe I used to make my cavacas comes from the facebook page Azorean Green Bean.  You can find the recipe there on her page.  I saw the photo she posted; they looked so yummy, I had to try them for myself.  Indeed they were delicious!   Thank you to Azorean Green Bean for the inspiration!

My husband has enjoyed cavacas since his childhood days in Portugal. I was introduced to them many years ago, when his grandmother, Avo Emilia, brought them over from Portugal to Canada on her yearly visits.  She also adored them.  I vividly remember her thorough enjoyment of the sugary confection!  Baking these brought back memories of those days long ago.  I miss her and think of her often.  Most times, memories of Avo Emilia come to me when I eat foods that she enjoyed, like leafy greens, fish, potatoes, salad, and homemade bread.  One thing she couldn't stand was reheated potatoes.  I will never forget that.  She is dearly missed and thought of often. 

Here she is displaying her homemade bread.
I took this photo of her.  She loved taking pictures!

Here is Azorean Green Bean's recipe including my changes/additions/comments in red


2 cups of flour *all-purpose
1 cup of oil  * I used olive oil
½ cup of whole milk *I used milk, but can be replaced with oil/olive oil
8 eggs at room temp
Sugar Glaze:

 2 cups of Confectioner’s Sugar
 zest of one lemon
 2 tablespoons of milk (more or less depending on the thickness you like)  * I used 1/4 cup of milk as I prefer the glaze thinner. 
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Grease regular size muffin tins or popover tins. *I used butter to grease. I tried the recipe twice, first using popover pan, second using muffin tins.  I preferred the muffin tins.
Using an electric mixer beat all ingredients for at least 20 minutes without stopping.
I highly recommend using a stand mixer on this recipe with the mixer set on level 6.
Fill the muffin or popover tins no more then half way.  *I filled mine using a 1/4 measuring cup, which was less than half way.  These really rise!  Be careful not to overfill them!
Bake on the middle rack; for moist Cavacas, bake for about 45 minutes; but if you like them on the dry side, bake for 1 hour. They will get to a nice golden color and “popover“ the pans.
While they are still warm, spoon the glaze over each one or just submerge each one in the glaze. Either way you can’t go wrong.
Serve on the same day, since it will dry even more for the following day.  Mine are on day 2 and tasting fabulous still!
If any of you decide to make the recipe.  Please let me know how they turned out!  Maybe you can send me a photo and I can share it here on my blog!   Wouldn't that be wonderful?!
Wishing everyone a happy November.  Santa Claus is coming to town this weekend.  Can you believe there are only 39 days, 12 hours, 58 minutes until Christmas.  Have you started your Christmas shopping yet?  I haven't!  EEK!


  1. Oh Rosinda....What a wonderfully simple and delightful recipe!!!!! My mother always coated nearly everything she made in a simple mixture...I remember the lemon juice coming through the sweet as a wonderful tang...(she used juice +zest instead of zest only)

    I have never heard of these before and they look so cute!!! I'm going to try them for the holidays and see how the family likes them!! Thank you for sharing your recipe!!


  2. Thank you for these honey, absolutly love them. Vo Mila would be over the moon to see this post about her, love and miss her.

  3. How cool to see this recipe. It seems so strange to me that they can be made in popover pans or muffin tins when their ultimate shape is more of a disk than a muffin. Might be very fun to try. I'd love to see what the batter looks like. And even the giant ones being held by Nuno's gram were made in muffin tins? I thought maybe they were made on a cookie sheet. Very interesting!♥

  4. Those look delicious!

  5. What a sweet-looking grandmother! I think it's so cute that she loved to have her picture taken! I printed off the recipe! Must try them soon. They look scrumptious! xoxo...Karen