So I came across these accidentally, as part of my research for my current novel. Set in Yorkshire in late November, early December, my protagonist visits the York Christmas markets.

I happen to love Christmas markets and these ones in York seem particularly magical – perhaps because they were the first ones we went to on our visit in 2015 and again in 2019. The stalls are all in little alpine style timber cabins and they sell everything from dried fruit pot pourri and Christmas decorations to gifts, Christmas jumpers, and so much food.

We usually get a mulled wine and wander around, maybe buying a sausage roll or a scotch egg to nibble on and perhaps some sloe gin and local cheese to take back to where we’re staying. So that’s what Philly Barker did too.

To make sure that I was being authentic though, I googled the stalls that would be open at this year’s Christmas market, and on that list was one selling Brigadieros in all sorts of flavours – milk, dark, white, Nutella, caramel, Baileys, walnut, Biscoff and more.

But what exactly is a brigadeiro? A popular sweet in Brazil, it’s not quite a fudge, not quite a truffle, but something in between them all. Brigadeiro means Brigadier in English and, these were, apparently named for Eduardo Gomes who was running for president in 1945 and whose military rank was Brigadiero. He might have lost the election, but he did have something very sweet named after him, so all was not lost…and these are very sweet.

With just four ingredients, even though there’s some stirring involved, they’re not that much of a palaver to make. This recipe calls for cocoa, but you could probably experiment with powdered chocolate such as Nesquick and possibly even Milo. Likewise, you could probably roll them in coconut or 100s &1000s for a different look.

Okay, without any more palaver, here’s the recipe.

What you need

  • 1 tablespoon butter (plus extra for greasing a plate)
  • 395g tin sweetened condensed milk
  • ¼ cup cocoa powder (30 g)
  • about 1 cup chocolate sprinkles

What you do with it

Into a wide saucepan add the condensed milk, cocoa powder and butter. Stir constantly over a low heat until until the mix has thickened and you can see the bottom of the pan for 2-3 seconds when dragging a spatula through it. This should take between 5-10 minutes, but keep an eye on it – it can catch really easily.

Pour onto a greased plate and pop it in the fridge to chill for an hour.

Roll the chilled mix into little balls and then roll the little balls into teh chocolate sprinkles.


Author: Jo

Author, baker, sunrise chaser

6 thoughts

  1. Oh those sound delicious! I love the texture of fudge and/or truffles so something in between the two must be fabulous as well.


  2. The fancy name doesn’t hit at its simplicity. Its a funny thing but I don’t think such a sweet thing would keep its long name here in Canada. It’d probably be shortened to something ordinary, like caramel balls or fudgies. I wonder if that’s a cultural thing? Thanks for recipe!

    Liked by 1 person

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