Dry. Crumbly. Bitter. Tragic. All words that too often describe gluten-free bread and the crushed carb-y dreams of the poor souls forced to choke it down in the name of trying to enjoy a BLT like a normal person for once. But what if there was gluten-free bread that actually inspired tears of joy instead of despair? And what if that bread was largely made of, say, cheese? (No, we are NOT just messing with you now, celiacs.)
The magic is real, and it’s called pao de quejio. These little pillows of airy, cheesy deliciousness have been an omnipresent staple in their native Brazil for way, way longer than the country’s been churning out supermodels and celebrity wives. The ultra-delayed bandwagon-jumping in the northern hemisphere is somewhat of a mystery—especially with gluten becoming America’s longest four-letter word—but we’re firmly in the better-late-than-never category on this one.
Since the crave-inducing rolls are traditionally made with cassava flour (don't worry if you can't find it tapioca flour will do in a pinch), their gluten-free status is completely legit. And if you don’t happen to have direct access to fresh farm cheese from Brazil, never fear because Parmesan will get the job done just fine. Or if you’re feeling extra sharp, you can shake things up with a heap of grated cheddar instead. But don’t let the fun in fun-sized cheesy bread stop there—stuff the orbs with basically anything savory from the fridge to make the world’s most adorable sliders.
Enjoy your new lease on bread-life, celiacs and gluten-haters.
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