Escondidinho de Carne-Seca (Brazilian Jerky Beef and Yuca Bowl)

Updated: Jun 9, 2018

By Cynthia Presser



Do not be fooled by the rustic look of this traditional Brazilian recipe – this simple dish has an incredible amount of flavor! Originally from the North Eastern region of Brazil, this delicious meal can be served as a full entrée or as an appetizer – sometimes prepared in individual small casseroles, which makes for a really cute presentation. These days, you can find it in restaurants and homes at all corners of Brazil. Carne-seca is the equivalent of a very high quality jerky beef (take a look at the Cook’s Notes to learn more). It is basically a kind of dried and salted meat that has been used for centuries in Brazilian cuisine. The real name of the dish is “Escondidinho de Carne-Seca”, which literally translates to “Jerky Beef Little Hidden One” – the carne-seca is “hidden” in between the two layers of velvety yuca purée. I thought that the literal translation would be a little crazy, so I am calling this recipe “Brazilian Jerky Beef and Yuca Bowl” – long name, but more comprehensive.

Serves 4 (as an entree) to 8 (as an appetizer)


Ingredients for Filling: ½ cup olive oil

2 medium onions, chopped

1 tablespoon red chili flakes

3 cups (about 1 pound) of soaked, cooked, trimmed, shredded carne-seca (high quality jerky beef – See Cook’s Notes)

2 ripe tomatoes, chopped

¼ cup scallions, finely sliced

Salt (See Cook’s Notes)


Ingredients for Yuca Purée: 2 pounds yuca (cassava), peeled and roughly sliced to fit in the pot (it can be frozen)

Salt