Bolo de Cacao


Bolo de Cacao

Bolo de Caco is a delicious bread unique to Madeira seen in Season two. It is typically cooked on a caco (flat basalt stone slab) and eaten with any meat, fish, or just simply butter. Bolo de Caco is made with sweet potato, but New Bedford’s Madeira festival is some of the only ones in the world made without sweet potato. Since the Madeira festival’s recipe is private, here is a typical recipe you can use


Units Scale

4 cups bread flour
1 1/4 cup warm water 1/2 cup sweet potatoes 2 1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp yeast

1 pinch sugar


Begin by bringing a pot of water to a boil. Peel and cook your sweet potatoes until tender. Let the sweet potatoes come to room temperature. Mash the sweet potatoes to form a smooth consistency and add in your sugar and yeast. Leave aside for at least 5 minutes. After the five minutes, you can add in your flour and mix together. Mix until all the flour is evenly distributed and until the dough has become a sticky consistency, or “shaggy dough”. Cover the dough with a plastic wrap and a kitchen towel and set aside for 1 hour.

After it has risen, stretch the dough and work in the salt. Fold the dough over itself until the salt has been integrated, or about 10 times. Cover the dough once more, and set aside for 2 hours. After it has rested, you want to stretch and fold it 10 more times. Cover and let rest for 30 minutes. You want to repeat this process 4 total times.


After stretching the dough 4 times, it is ready to be shaped. You can use a pie pan or plate with a rim. Place parchment paper or spread some flour to prevent the dough from sticking in your preferred mold. Divide your dough into 3 even balls and flatten each of them into 8”-10”. Place your dough in your preferred mold, cover it, and let rise for 1-2 hours.

Since most don’t own a flat basalt stone slab, you can use a regular skillet, cast iron, as well as electric skillet. Warm your skillet and add a small amount of oil. Place the dough into the pan over high heat for 2 minutes. Reduce the heat to a medium-low and remain cooking for 3 minutes. Flip your dough and reduce the heat to the lowest setting and let the dough cook for 6 minutes. When done, your bread should be about 3⁄4”-1 1⁄2” thick. Cut horizontally and eat with whatever your heart desires!


Because this is a recreation of a secret recipe seen in season in Season two episode four of Maria’s Portuguese Table, we have used a recipe that can be found here:

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