Baixaria – Corn Couscous with ground beef


mercado - baixaria

This is a typical dish of Acre, Amazon region of Brazil, bordering Peru and Bolivia, where i live.

It is a mixture of corn couscous, parsley and chives, ground beef and fried egg. Much appreciated for breakfast.



  • 250 g pre cooked flaked corn flour or pre cooked corn flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 400 ml water, approximately

Ground Beef:

  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 4 cloves chopped garlic
  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 (15.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes, with liquid

To Cover:

  • 2 fried eggs
  • parsley and chopped tomatoes



  1. Mix the corn flour, manioc starch and salt, together, in a bowl.
  2. Gradually add the water and mix well until all ingredients are moist and mixture has a crumbly texture. Let it stand for 10 minutes.
  3. Fill the steamer pot half full of water.
  4. Place the couscous mixture into the steamer basket and gently level the top without pressing. The mixture should remain soft to allow the steam to penetrate just right.
  5. Cover and cook over low heat for about 15 minutes, until it begins to release its aroma. At this point the mixture starts to pull away from the sides of the steamer.

How to steam couscous with a deep plate (or pot lid) 

Transfer the couscous mixture to a deep plate that has a larger diameter than the pot diameter. Wrap the deep plate with a clean cloth, making a knot on the bottom of the plate. Fill the pot one third full of water, bring to a boil and “cover” the pot with the wrapped deep plate (the couscous mixture must be facing downwards). Simmer over low heat for 10-15 minutes. Serve the couscous hot straight from the “cooking plate”.

Ground Beef

Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Stir in the onions and garlic, and cook until the onions have caramelized to a deep, golden brown, 15 to 20 minutes. Stir frequently as the onions cook. Meanwhile, place the ground beef, bell pepper, tomatoes, and parsley into a mixing bowl; mix until evenly combined.

Add the meat mixture into the caramelized onions, and increase the heat to medium-high. Cook and stir until the beef is crumbly and no longer pink, about 10 minutes.

Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer 15 minutes covered, until the liquid evaporates.

Photo by: @thalita.figueiredo

5 thoughts to “Baixaria – Corn Couscous with ground beef”

  1. It looks great too, with shredded chicken.
    And to serve like this: couscous with egg, shredded chicken and salad

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