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Ceia de Natal (Brazilian Christmas Turkey)

Monday, 26 May 2008


The marinade suggested in this recipe is indigenous to Brazil in that it utilizes one of Brazil’s great ingredients, Cachaça, made famous around the world in the sweet taste of the Caipirinha, one of Latin America’s most popular alcoholic beverages. Balanced with the tart taste of lime juice and zest, this marinade is versatile and is the first step to making your holiday turkey. Note: This recipe requires advance preparation.


At a glance
Latin American
Cooking Method
Heat Level
Main Course
  • One 12-pound turkey

For the Marinade:

  • 2 cups Cachaça or light rum

  • 2 medium onions, diced

  • 6 cloves garlic, chopped

  • 4 ripe tomatoes, diced

  • 1 cup olive oil

  • 2 bay leaves

  • 1 cup fresh lime juice

  • ¼ cup grated lime zest

  • 2 cups of water

  • ½ cup chopped scallions

  • 1 cup chopped parsley


In a large bowl, combine all the marinade ingredients and mix well.

Place a 12-pound turkey in a roasting bag and cover it with the marinade. Close the bag so that it has no air pockets, and let the turkey marinate overnight in the refrigerator.


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