Fortaleza is definitely blessed with many tropical fruits and meals. Among favorites of tourists are fish, seafood and shellfish. Lobster is very well made here too. If you're on the beaches, grab a crab vendor (vendedor de caranguejo) for some tasty snacks and wash it down with a beer or coconut water. However, be careful of purchasing food later in the day, as the vendor may have been carrying the food around all day in the heat.
For the lovers of the seafood:
For drink you can choose one of these options:
- There is a dish made with fish called "peixada cearense"; this is served in many restaurants, from humble to posh variations. Recipe: pieces of fish stewed with vegetables (onion, carrot, tomato) and boiled eggs; served with rice and "pirão" (thick broth based on manyoc). Probably, the most typical dish in Fortaleza and Ceará.
- Ceará is the largest producer of lobster in Brazil. Even so, lobster is still a luxury, and one of the most expensive dishes in Fortaleza. From January 1st to April 30th, the mating period of lobsters, the fishing is prohibited, which may have impact on availability and prices of lobster.
- Crabs (caranguejo) is another typical food of Fortaleza. It is served in most "barracas" (kioskes) in the beach. The most common way to eat crab: the crab is boiled in salty water or, sometimes, in coconut milk; the entire crab is brought to you with a small wooden hammer and a small piece of flat wood; you break the crab with the hammer and eats piece by piece. Eating crab takes some practice.
- If you are a fan of seafood, keep your eyes open for "caldeirada". Basically, it is a big pan where all kind of seafood is stewed: lobster, octopus, shrim, fish, calamari, etc.
- Another tip for fish and seafood appreciators: try a dish called "moqueca" (or muqueca). It is original from Bahia. The ingredients are not a secret (fish, vegetables and condiments), but just like the Spanish paella, there is a secret way to prepare moqueca, which makes it an unfortable gastronomic experience.
- Chico do Caranguejo is the best-known bar at Praia do Futuro.
- Mucuripe, Travessa Maranguape, 108. Tel.55 85 254.3020 .
- Forró do Pirata on Mondays in Praia de Iracema. A very happening crowd dances to forró and axé music.