Prep 10 mins
Cook 50 mins
Festivas Juninas (June Festivals) are held in honor of Roman Catholic saints—St. Anthony, St. Peter, and St. John. Brazilians believe St. John protects the corn and green bean harvests, giving them plenty of food in the upcoming year. They celebrate St. John's Day with a harvest festival. Brazilians like to eat corn, as corn-on-the-cob and popcorn, and corn-based dishes such as corn puddings and corn cake, at all of the Festivas Juninas. From FoodinBrazil.com
- 1 (11 ounce) can corn, drained
- 7 tablespoons butter, softened
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 3 eggs, beaten
- 1 (14 ounce) can coconut milk
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 2 cups granulated sugar (or less to taste, maybe Splenda could be substituted)
- Preheat oven to 350°F
- Place all of the dry ingredients into a bowl and mix; slowly add milk, eggs, butter, and corn; mix until smooth.
- Pour the mixture into a large greased loaf pan.
- Bake for about 50 minutes.
- To test if the cake is done, stick a toothpick into the center; the cake is done when the toothpick comes out clean.
- Remove the cake from the pan by turning it over onto a wire rack to cool.
- Slice and serve.
The correct name is actually "Festa Junina," normally used in the singular. I attended many of these parties in my life and never heard that Brazilians believe the saints protect corn or green bean harvests. Remember: at the time we have this party, it is winter in Brazil, so, no crops! We celebrate by making a large bonfire and people jump over. We also serve candies made with coconut, popcorn, corn cake (bolo de fub?, which is made of a very fine corn flour, like cornmeal), peanuts (some of it consists of peanuts pounded to a powder and mixed with sugar, then compacted into little "cakes," yum!!!) and quent?o (made with wine or cacha?a%u2014all depending of which part of Brazil you live). There is also a fun "wedding," a performance where the groom is forced by the father of the bride (with shot gun in hand) to marry his daughter, a generally pregnant bride. All kinds of things happen, it lots of fun. The saints honored are Saint Antony (June 13), Saint Peter (June 29) and Saint John (June 24). St. Antony is the protector of marriage. In the eve of the 13 women who want to marry--or young girls%u2014read their fortune in a variety of ways. If they don't marry that year, the next, as punishment, they hang the saint upside-down in a well. Another way is to separate the young Jesus from the saint, promising to unite them when a groom is found. Desperate times... ;-) In Brazil St. Antony also helps people find things they lost. Thanks for sharing the recipe, by the way! (It reminds me of the corn cakes people make in North of Brazil, were we also lived.)