We’ve been following the guys at the Spanish Table for a long time now so we know why you love them! Ryan and I been bouncing across the Iberian Peninsula for the better part of a decade and yet we love following along with the newsletters that cross our inbox weekly! Being fellow Americans, and being passionate about Portugal and Spain, it’s fun to share that obsession other people who get it!
So welcome to our home!
Some of you might have heard of Catavino before, but for those who haven’t, here’s a short recap. In 2005, we packed up our bags, sold anything that wouldn’t fit inside and crossed the big pond in search of adventures among vine covered terraces. And although we had our fair share of fun in vineyards, and long afternoon meals, finding a stable job wasn’t easy – especially when we didn’t know Spanish, have a work visa or prepare in any way whatsoever for our leap. Nope, we were young, ambitious and completely naive.
As a result, Catavino the blog was born!
Catavino satiated our never-ending appetite for food and wine. It gave us an excuse to explore the Iberian peninsula, and make friends both online and off. Today, we’re more than just a blog about Portuguese and Spanish food, wine and culture, we’ve begun creating custom food and wine experiences in Portugal and Spain! After the 50th friend asked us for our travel tips to make their visit better we realized we should be a bit more formal. So today we help anyone find cool things to do, and the best way to get from point A to point B when visiting Portugal or Spain. Basically we are your expat friends in Iberia and ready to help in any way we can. All that said, today we thought we would follow in typical Spanish Table fashion and share one of our favorite Portuguese recipes! “Arroz de Pato” (duck and rice), a ubiquitous comfort food throughout Portugal with a rich flavor and perfect to share with friends is about as common here as pasta is in Italy. Traditionally baked in a ceramic pot, in villages like those in the Beira Baixa, to conserve and distribute heat more efficiently and at a lower temperature it is a simple one dish dinner that can sustain you for a few days or a large group of friends! So try out the recipe below and let us know how it goes!
- 1 duck
- 2 onions
- 1/2 cup of olive oil
- 6 slices of Pancetta (traditionally toucinho)
- 1 head of garlic
- 1 bushel of parsley
- 1 ½ cups of rice1 chouriço (Portuguese smoked sausage)
- 1 lemon
- 3 egg yolks
- Salt to taste
- Dice the onions and mince the garlic and add both to a large pot (big enough to fit the duck) with the olive oil and the pancetta cut in to strips.
- Once all ingredients are golden, place the duck on top of them (either whole or cut into four parts) and add salt to taste.
- Sear the duck on both sides without charring.
- Remove the duck and set aside.
- Add water (about enough to cover the duck since you’ll eventually place it back in the pot) and bring to a boil.
- Once it’s boiling add the duck and the chouriço (reserve some chouriço slices to top the dish).
- Let it boil again until the duck is cooked (about 20-30 minutes).
- Remove the duck and set aside.
- Sieve the broth; remove any extra fat and reserve.
- Save the onion, garlic, pancetta and the chouriço for use later and bring the broth to a boil again.
- Add the lemon juice and the rice when it begins to boil.
- After it boils simmer until rice is cooked.
- While the rice is cooking puree the reserved onion, garlic, pancetta and chouriço and set aside (Though in most recipes these ingredients are discarded, our tip is to puree them to add an extra layer of flavor. It works beautifully.)
- Then break the meat of the duck off the bones and shred it (not too thinly) and set aside.
- Once the rice is cooked add a layer of it on the bottom of the ceramic pot (or any bake safe tray) and then add a layer of duck and one of the pureed ingredients. Keep doing that until you run out of ingredients.
- Finish it off with a few slices of chouriço and place in a preheated oven (475 degrees or depending on your oven and then bake for 20-30 minutes at about 375 or 400 degrees).
- Fifteen minutes before removing the dish from the oven, beat three egg yolks to cover the top of the dish and put back in the oven for the remainder of the time.
- Remove and finish with freshly cracked black pepper and parsley.
As this dish is both rich and brimming with intense flavors, you’ll need a wine to cut the fat and leave your palate rejuvenated. The Douro is a region whose reds can stand up to rich flavors and meld with the intense flavors of the duck. From the Douro we suggest something like Quinta do Vallado Tinto – round and soft enough to showcase the dish, but intense enough to cut through the rich duck fat, and leave you with some bold fruit flavors.
And for those who want white? Why not recommend a white wine from Mr. Duck himself, Luis Pato. Yes his name can be, but never is, translated to Luis Duck. We digress, Luis is a good friend and a pioneer in the Bairrada region. We think his Maria Gomes white has enough backbone to beautifully pair with this dish. While at the same time standing up to to it so as to leave the palate clean and ready for seconds! Take a moment to try one or both, and let us know what you think!
|Make sure to checkout our 2015 Harvest Tour or book yourself a custom tour to start exploring Iberia in person.
Even if you’re only dreaming about visiting Iberia, sign up for our newsletter and be sure you’ll receive a lot more reasons to visit including: recipes, wine recommendations and more!