Look for the "Casa do Pão de Queijo"

Pão De Quiejo

by Moira Silva

Pão De Quiejo

Zachary Dupon

Pão de Quiejo is widely eaten in Brazil with coffee for a small bite or breakfast, or from a streetside vendor as a snack.  

Island-made pottery and painting line the walls of the Scottish Bakehouse, giving it a nice down-home feel to a very iconic bakery that has been on Martha’s Vineyard since 1961. Daniele Dominick, its third owner, shares proudly that every bakery item is made in-house from scratch daily with high quality ingredients. Daniele gets her eggs, produce, and meat from Island farmers as often as she can.

“We cut every strawberry that goes in a pie,” Promises Daniele.

The bakery has a versatile selection. While her made-to-order turkey sandwich and apple turnovers delight a large portion of her customers, her edamame succotash and Zapatista (think chocolate with chili) often appeal more to my more curious appetite. These diverse options, coupled with Daniele’s interest in accommodating special diets (especially gluten free and vegan), make the Bakehouse a must-stop on the Island.

In high demand right now (consider ordering ahead or go early) is Pão de Quiejo, also called Brazilian Cheese bread. Daniele discovered the baked item while on vacation in Brazil—it’s practically a staple there. But thanks to the Bakehouse, it’s practically a staple on Martha’s Vineyard now.

Made with tapioca flour, its moist center is balanced with a slightly crispy crust. The cheese has been mixed well into the dough, making the cheese taste extra good. I like to tear apart my Pão de Quiejo and eat it piece by piece. The finish is satisfyingly cheesy, and best of all it doesn’t leave me with greasy fingers.

Soft and rich, it more than satisfies my voracious appetite between meals. Daniele remembers, “In Brazil, we ate them with a coffee for breakfast or in the afternoon.”

No matter the time of day, I prefer mine lightly toasted. What’s better than melted cheese woven through warm bread? The inside moistens and softens even more. It’s the ultimate in cheesy satisfaction (and it’s gluten free too).

Whatever winds up in your brown bag at the Bakehouse, enjoy your treasure slowly, just like how it was made. Relax under the oak trees surrounding the iconic bakery and savor every wholesome bite.