Snapshot: vegan Congolese food in São Paulo
Opened in 2017, Congolinária is a restaurant based in the Sumaré neighborhood of Brazil's largest city.
According to owner Pitchou Luhata Luambo, there's been ‘a lot of change’ in the local vegan food scene in the past few years.
‘When I started, there was prejudice against veganism in Brazil. Nowadays, there's a greater acceptance. In Congo, people eat more vegetables than meat. I saw this as an opportunity.’
Congolinária's most popular dish is ngombe, a gnocchi made from plantains, served with a shimeji sauce, fufu and simba, a Congolese rice pilaf.
‘I took typical dishes and adapted them so that Brazilians can identify with them. The dishes [are] slightly different than in the Congo,’ Pitchou says.