Brazilian treats in Southern Lebanon
09 de julho de 2016
São Paulo – When she moved to Lebanon 14 years ago, the Brazilian-born Inez Ribeiro Gomes de Ghandour had never worked with anything food-related. A seasoned architect, she changed her life over to adapt to the new country – the land of her maternal grandfather and of her husband. She opened Flavors from Brazil, a business that sells frozen savory items. The idea panned out, and now she delivers her treats in ten cities across the Arab country.
“I had help from a friend [in starting the business] and I began spreading the word among my Brazilian friends that I was making [savory items],” relates Ghandour, who lives in the southern Lebanese city of Nabatieh. Word-of-mouth led to lots of orders, she says. “There are lots of people in Southern Lebanon who are originally from Brazil. At first I started doing it for the Brazilians,” she explains.
Apart from selling her treats made to order, Ghandour places them at a shop specializing in chicken and frozen foods. “I began to branch out and target the locals. Now, the people in my city are very familiar with Brazilian cuisine,” she claims. Every week, the cook delivers an average of 15 to 20 batches of a dozen each to this shop.
Born in Campos dos Goitacazes, Rio de Janeiro, Ghandour learned to make savory foods online. The options includes shrimp, palmetto and meat rissoles, coxinha (fried chicken-filled dumpling), cheese balls and cheese rolls. “Lebanese people are very much into cheese. I make this little ball stuffed with mozzarella, green corn and oregano that’s a hit around these parts. They love my cheese balls,” she says.
Ghandour also cooks lots of orders for birthday parties and get-togethers. “Most of the time, Brazilians who buy from me are having parties and they’ll make big orders of about ten dozens,” she notes. On a day-to-day basis, the clientele is mostly Lebanese. “During Ramadan, the people really eat a lot around here. I started working two months ahead of time for Ramadan. My freezers were all filled to the brim. It was a lot of work,” she says regarding the holy month of Muslims.
She says she takes orders not only in her own city, but also in other Lebanese municipalities. “I make deliveries in ten cities. I enjoy it; it’s fun. I’ll go over and deliver, no problem,” she says.
Flavors from Brazil
A dozen goes for USD 6
*Translated by Gabriel Pomerancblum