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Tag Archives: Portuguese food

The Lush Green Parks and Gardens of Porto, Portugal

There are few cities in the world that are internationally known for their parks. Off the top of my head, I can think of Central Park in New York City, Parc Guell in Barcelona, Stanley Park in Vancouver, Griffith Park in Los Angeles, Lincoln Park in Chicago and Monsanto Park in Lisbon, but never once has anyone boasted of the rich, green paradises of Porto. Never has anyone sat down with me and said, “Hey Gabriella, make sure you squirrel away some time to see some of the most delicious gardens, incredible vistas or panoply of birds that grace our city parks!” As a lover of all things leafy, I’m amazed that this nugget of information is kept secret, and […]

Eggs: Sweet and Savory Portuguese Recipes

Prior to my migration from America to Portugal in 2011, I had often heard of the love affair that the Portuguese have with their eggs, especially when used in their sugar laden sweets. I didn’t really understand that eggs were also loved as additions to savory dishes until I got here and was pleasantly surprised by both the sweet and savory side of the ovos de Portugal. As savory dishes go, I find the egg to be an afterthought, an addition, not the center of attention that they often are in American cuisine. When it comes to ervilhas com ovos escalfados, or peas with poached eggs, that is definitely not the case. If there were no eggs in this dish, […]

Friday Feature Photo: Portuguese Amêijoas à Bulhão Pato

Photographer: Ricardo Bernardo Capture Date: March 5, 2011 Location: Seminário de Faro, Faro, Portugal About: The photo was taken during an ALFA, Associação Livre Fotógrafos do Algarve, workshop which demonstrated the preparation of two traditional Portuguese dishes: Amêijoas à Bulhão Pato and Bacalhau à Conde da Guarda, a recipe from Mestre João Ribeiro. This particular photo of Amêijoas à Bulhão Pato consists of: clams (Ruditapes decussatus), locally known as Amêijoa-boa, with coriander, garlic, a shot of white wine, olive oil and a dash of salt and pepper. Desktop Wallpaper: To download this image, simply right-click on the image and select “save link as” or “save target as”, then select the preferred location on your computer to save the photo. Purchase: Please contact us directly […]

Taberna do Largo: A Personal Tribute to Courageous Women

Taberna do Largo is an unassuming little wine bar nestled in the historic district of Porto; which approximately a year ago, I ducked in when taking refuge from the freezing rain. Music gently played over the speakers, the candles flickered on the tables in the back and a sweet young woman with a soft Portuguese accent whispered across the bar, “If you need help choosing something to drink or eat, just ask.” I didn’t realize it at the time, but I had just met Teresa, one of the three lovely muses that owned Taberna do Largo. Blowing a thick lock of hair out of her face, she smiled and pointed to a table in the back. “Feel free to sit […]

Lisbon is for Lovers: The Perfect Romantic Getaway!

There are several European cities known for their Old-World romance, sprinkled in fairy dust and history. Take a leisurely walk past ancient architecture, beautiful promenades and cozy little cafés humming with live music and you’ll feel transported back in time. And there is no better place to experience this romance than Lisbon! Lisbon is unique for star-crossed lovers because it’s just a short train-ride away from the stunningly beautiful, hilltop city of Sintra. This UNESCO World Heritage site paints the perfect fairytale romance filled with castles, palaces, decadent manor houses with flowery landscaped gardens, and winding cobblestone streets and alleyways that make this city charming. Both Sintra and Lisbon have their fill of beautiful views, delicious sweets and pretty gardens so either […]

Taberna da Esquina: A collision of quaint and cozy cuisine

The day was cold and windy as I waddled down the Leça da Palmeira coast deep in conversation with friend over the intense difference in weather between Barcelona and Porto. Seven and half months pregnant, my dress barely draped below my belly as the wind whipped my skirt high in the air bastardizing everything Marilene Monroe stood for. Cold and annoyed that my attire failed to adequately cover me even in the lightest of breezes , I whimpered my desire to find a cozy nook to bury my maladjusted state. “I know a fabulous little spot just near here! You’ll love it! Super cozy and cute, you’ll fall in love!” she bubbled. Tripping over cobblestone for the umpteenth time, incapable of […]

Chestnut Season in Portugal

The sound of chestnuts (castanhas) crashing down through branches is one that I always associate with autumn in Minho. Throughout the baking summer, we watched the thick green prickly clusters growing on large majestic trees scattered about the surrounding hill slopes wondering if they would ever ripen. By the middle of October, the clusters turned brown, some splitting open and ejecting their chestnuts, while others fell whole creating a spiny carpet on the ground below. A change in the weather in late October found us bent double against the wind and rain, baskets in hand as we set about gathering chestnuts. Rubbing the soles of our boots over the surface of the shell to split them open we reveled at […]

Feliz Natal: Traditional Portuguese Holiday Cuisine

Boas Festas!  Happy Holidays from Portugal!  The Christmas season is upon us, and here in Lisbon, we’re celebrating the only way we know how, with delicious homemade food. All major Portuguese holidays have their own unique dishes and sweets, but Christmas is by far the most plentiful among them. From mid November onward, you can peruse any bakery or supermarket to find a host of these one-of-kind desserts. The list of sweets is extensive, but each has their own texture and flavor that is worthy of your attention. To begin with, there are two kinds of Christmas cakes: Bolo Rei (King Cake) and Bola Raina (Queen Cake). King Cake, not to be confused with the Mardi-Gras version, dates back to the time of the […]

An incredible Porto dining experience at DOP by Rui Paula

If you are visiting Porto, make sure to plan an evening of dining pleasure at Rui Paula’s DOP restaurant for stunning food and wine and the modern face of Portuguese gastronomic culture. Rui Paula is a name that any visitor to the Douro should be familiar with. Self-taught Chef Rui Paula is the name behind DOC, the very successful gastronomic destination housed on a pier (unfortunately for the pun, not a dock) sitting on the Douro River itself on the main road between Régua and Pinhao. DOC is a must-visit destination offering fantastic views, food, service and wines. DOC established Rui Paula’s reputation not only for quality, but also as an inventive chef whose creations are beautiful without being outlandish, […]

Alheira: The King of Portuguese Sausage

Alheira is a smoked Portuguese sausage, (pronounced “Al – iyai -rah”), that derives its name from the Portuguese word alho, meaning “garlic”. Different from its pork-dominated counterparts, Alheira is not only filled with poultry (chicken and turkey), but also game meat (duck, rabbit, venison, partridge, pheasant): creating a mouthwatering smokey, garlicky and earthy aroma. Now here comes the interesting part, hold tight! The original Alheira was a pork-free sausage that was invented by the Portuguese Jews during the Inquisition. When the practice of the Jewish faith was outlawed, the Jews, especially the large community in the northern region of Trás-os-Montes, were easily found as they lacked the traditional pork sausages that hung from the smokehouses. To disguise themselves as “New Christians”, they created their own sausage, made from […]