Santa Catarina Fine Manioc Flour

Slow Food Presidium

Brazil

Santa Catarina

Cereals and flours

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Along the southern coast of the state of Santa Catarina, amidst sand dunes and manioc fields, are the engenhos de farinha, artisanal mills used for the production of manioc flour. This product is the result of the mingling between indigenous cultures, their identity closely linked to manioc, and European cultures, primarily the community of emigrants from the Azores who arrived here over 200 years ago, improving the selection of the manioc varieties and introducing new machinery and processing techniques.
These days, the fine flour also symbolizes the cultural resistance of the communities who are seeking to keep alive not only a traditional product and food culture, but also the sustainable management of natural resources, the landscape and agrobiodiversity.
As the name suggests, this white flour has a very fine, soft texture. The flavor can be sweeter or more acidic depending on the type of processing. The longer the manioc mass is pressed, the more acidic the flour will be. According to the locals, the more acidic the flour, the more it “warms the mouth.” The less-acidic flour is known as sweet flour.
The choice of manioc variety also affects the quality of the final product. Cultivation is carried out using agroecological practices, so no synthetic chemicals are used. The harvesting season runs from May to September, a period commonly known as the “flour season.”
When the tubers are brought to the processing facility, their outer rind is removed and they are washed and then broken up to form a mass. This process also produces the manioc starch known as polvilho. The mass is then pressed, spread out on a large tray or slab and heated to a temperature of around 160°C. There is no precise cooking time; the producers tell when it is ready by smell. During cooking, the mass is constantly moved around to ensure an even toasting. This procedure, known as forneamento, produces unique sensory characteristics, but demands great experience. In the last phase, the coarse flour is sieved to remove the caroeira, the lumps of flour that did not break up during the toasting. As well as flour, the manioc mass can also be used to make beiju, a kind of biscuit, and bijajica, an indigenous steamed cake flavored with spices.

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The manioc flour produced in Santa Catarina’s artisanal mills is a staple in family diets, and only surplus production is sold on the market.
The Presidium was started to help producers to work together, defining common strategies and objectives and promoting the product on alternative markets, while also preserving artisanal techniques. This project is part of the wider activities of the Slow Food network, aimed at promoting the history and culture of traditional products.
The Presidium flour producers have been working together since 2007 (when they became a Terra Madre food community), and in 2010 they became involved in a project to encourage flour production called “Ponto de Cultura dos Engenhos de Farinha” run by CEPAGRO, an NGO promoting agroecology in rural and urban areas.

Production area
Imbituba, Garopaba, Florianópolis, Paulo Lopes, Palhoça and Angelina municipalities, Santa Catarina state
40 farmers and processors
Referente Slow Food
Giselle Miotto
g.miotto@slowfoodbrasil.com.br

Referenti produttori del Presidio
Marlene Borges
Tel. +48 99181 2882
acordi.fdh@gmail.com

Catarina e Celso Gelsleuchter
Tel. +48 98477 1263
catarinaecelso@hotmail.com

Graziele Heidenreich
Tel. +48 98838 2326
graziheidenreich@hotmail.com
The manioc flour produced in Santa Catarina’s artisanal mills is a staple in family diets, and only surplus production is sold on the market.
The Presidium was started to help producers to work together, defining common strategies and objectives and promoting the product on alternative markets, while also preserving artisanal techniques. This project is part of the wider activities of the Slow Food network, aimed at promoting the history and culture of traditional products.
The Presidium flour producers have been working together since 2007 (when they became a Terra Madre food community), and in 2010 they became involved in a project to encourage flour production called “Ponto de Cultura dos Engenhos de Farinha” run by CEPAGRO, an NGO promoting agroecology in rural and urban areas.

Production area
Imbituba, Garopaba, Florianópolis, Paulo Lopes, Palhoça and Angelina municipalities, Santa Catarina state
40 farmers and processors
Referente Slow Food
Giselle Miotto
g.miotto@slowfoodbrasil.com.br

Referenti produttori del Presidio
Marlene Borges
Tel. +48 99181 2882
acordi.fdh@gmail.com

Catarina e Celso Gelsleuchter
Tel. +48 98477 1263
catarinaecelso@hotmail.com

Graziele Heidenreich
Tel. +48 98838 2326
graziheidenreich@hotmail.com

Territory

StateBrazil
RegionSanta Catarina

Other info

CategoriesCereals and flours