Brazilian Chicken Stew (Galinhada)

Herbs and spices perfume this rich Brazilian stew
40 Ratings
100% would make again
Photo: Rachel Vanni/Tasting Table

This recipe from Alex Atala’s restaurants, D.O.M. and Dalva e Dito, became a popular dish for local chefs to eat after hours, and we can see why: Chicken is slowly simmered in broth flavored with herbs and spices to create a rich, flavorful stew that’s perfect spooned over rice. Ground annatto seeds naturally color the stew bright red, while the traditional Brazilian ingredient, tapioca flour, thickens it.

We call for a chicken broken down into 10 pieces in this recipe. For those who may wonder if a chicken even has that many pieces, let us elaborate. The typical eight pieces of a chicken include two drumsticks, two thighs, two breasts and two wings. In this case, you halve the breasts crosswise to make 10 pieces in total.

To learn more, read “Meet ‘Chef’s Table’ Star Alex Atala.”

Brazilian Chicken Stew (Galinhada)

Recipe adapted from Geovane Carneiro, D.O.M., São Paulo, Brazil

Yield: 6 servings

Prep Time: 30 minutes, plus overnight marinating time

Cook Time: 1 hour and 5 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour and 35 minutes, plus overnight marinating time


For the Stew:

One 3½-to-4-pound chicken, broken down into 10 pieces

2 cups cilantro leaves, roughly chopped

1 cup parsley leaves, roughly chopped

1 cup basil leaves, roughly chopped

½ cup spearmint leaves

6 tablespoons ground annatto seeds

5 garlic cloves, roughly chopped

4 plum tomatoes, roughly chopped

2 medium yellow onions, roughly chopped

1 jalapeño, stemmed and roughly chopped

1 bay leaf

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

8 cups chicken stock

8 ounces okra, cut into 1-inch pieces

¾ cup white vinegar

⅓ cup tapioca flour

For the Rice:

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 small yellow onion, finely chopped

2 cups long-grain white rice

4 cups water


1. Make the stew: In a large bowl, combine all the stew ingredients, except the chicken stock, okra, vinegar and tapioca flour. Toss the chicken to coat. Let marinate in the refrigerator overnight.

2. The next day, combine the marinated chicken and the marinade in a 6-quart Dutch oven with the chicken stock. Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally until the chicken is tender and the liquid has reduced slightly, 1 hour.

3. Meanwhile, place the okra in a small bowl and cover with vinegar. Let soak for 20 minutes, then drain, discarding the vinegar. Add to the stew to simmer for the last 5 minutes of cooking time.

4. While the stew is cooking, make the rice: In a medium saucepan, heat the vegetable oil over medium heat. Add the onion and sweat until translucent, 5 minutes. Add the rice and stir to incorporate, then pour in the water and bring to a simmer. Once simmering, cover and cook until the water is absorbed and the rice is tender, 15 minutes. Fluff with a fork, then keep warm until ready to serve.

5. In a small bowl, ladle in 1 cup of the stewing liquid and whisk in the tapioca flour until thickened. Pour into the stew and stir to combine, then let simmer until the stew is thickened, 3 to 5 minutes.

6. Divide the rice between bowls and ladle the stew over top, then serve.

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