To savor the most typically Belenense of Pará ’s many delicacies, you’ll have to head to a simple barraca across the street from the Colégio Nazaré (Av. Nazaré, Nazaré, tel. 91/3274-4874, 3–8 p.m. daily). From this spot, for the last 37 years, Maria do Carmo has been serving up what many consider to be the most perfect tacacá in town. Maria do Carmo attributes the success of her fragrant broth to quality ingredients such as the giant shrimp imported from Maranhão  and jambu purchased daily from the Ver-o-Peso market .
Another equally beloved snack is the tapiocas (crunchy crêpes made from manioc flour) that Andreia Dias Gonçalves has been making since she was a young girl in Pará ’s interior. Locals flock to her stand, Tapioquinha de Mosqueiro (Complexo São José Liberato, Cidade Velha , 9 a.m.–7 p.m. Tues.–Sun.) for their early morning and late afternoon tapioca fix. In terms of fillings, there are more than 60 sweet and savory possibilities. However, the most popular is molhada, in which the tapioca, filled with freshly grated coconut, is dipped in coconut milk and then wrapped in a banana leaf.
Tucked away amidst the old mansions of Cidade Velha , Portinha (Rua Doutor Malcher 463, Cidade Velha, tel. 91/3223-0922, 5–10 p.m. Tues. and Thurs.–Sun.) is easily identifiable by the locals who line up in front of this tiny lanchonete to feast on homemade pastries, all of which have an Amazonian twist. For example, instead of ground beef, the Lebanese esfihas are stuffed with duck, jambu, and tucupi. There are also turnovers filled with smoked sausage and pupunha, and rolls stuffed with sun-dried tomatoes, buffalo mozzarella, and Brazil nuts. If you want a meal, regional dishes such as maniçoba and tacacá are prepared daily.
Perhaps the most famous ice cream parlor in the country, Cairu (Travessa 14 de Março 1570, Nazaré, tel. 91/3212-5595, noon–midnight Mon.–Thurs., noon–2 a.m. Fri.–Sun.) has been churning out its lip-smacking sorvetes for close to 50 years. Purists can indulge in Amazonian flavors made from local fruits such as bacuri, murici, sapoti, graviola, and açai, while novelty-seekers can try the “mestiços” (mixed breeds) such as carimbó (cupuaçu and Brazil nut) and maria isabel (bacuri, shortbread, and coconut). The ice creams are so delectable that five-star restaurants in Rio  and São Paulo  proudly feature them on their dessert menus. There are 11 locations around Belém , including one at the Estação das Docas .