The Beirut was invented in the 1950s by two Syrian brothers who owned a diner in São Paulo. One day they ran out of regular sliced bread and served their native Syrian flatbread instead—and it was so popular they decided to keep it.

Serves 4


  • 4 large, thick flatbreads
  • 4 Tbsp. chili mayonnaise
  • 3 ounces wild arugula
  • 3 to 4 plum tomatoes, sliced
  • 1 1/4 pounds cooked Spicy Malagueta Chicken (see separate recipe)
  • Scant 1/2 cup grated cheddar cheese


    Slice the flatbreads in half horizontally. Spread each bottom half with 1 tablespoon chili mayonnaise, then add a handful of arugula leaves and arrange a layer of tomato slices on top. Slice the chicken into thin strips and arrange them over the tomatoes. Sprinkle over an even layer of cheese, then put the remaining flatbread halves on top.

    Preheat a panini press or place a griddle pan over medium-high heat. Cook for 3 to 5 minutes, until the flatbread is golden and the cheese begins to ooze out from around the sides. (If using a griddle pan, press down for 2 minutes while you cook each side). Remove and let cool while you cook the remaining sandwiches. Cut each one into quarters and serve warm.

    Reprinted with permission from Brazilian Barbecue & Beyond © 2014 by Sterling Epicure, an imprint of Sterling Publishing Co. Photography by Martin Poole.

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