Portuguese food

by / Wednesday, 25 January 2012 / Published in Food
Portugal food

The diversity of Portuguese cuisine, as well as its origins, comes mainly from the Mediterranean and the Atlantic, as is clear from the strong presence of fish and shellfish. Portugal is famous for its food and wine. From the exquisite cuisine of the upmarket restaurants to the local “tascas”, you are guaranteed a delicious gastronomic experience. The more modern, recent restaurants offer vegetarian dishes and Portuguese fusion cuisine.

Portuguese cuisineFood in Portugal is a very important subject.

The Portuguese enjoy talking about food, about as much as they enjoy eating it and celebrations to different food stuffs are a common occurrence throughout the year in many town squares in Central Portugal. Big festas (festivals) are made for dried fruits, soup festivals and large three day gastronomy fairs where the topic of conversation is. . . food.

Portuguese food is generally inexpensive and served in large quantities, with €8 buying you a hearty meal in a café and under €25 enough to get you a meal in most of the restaurants in Portugal.

What you must try:

  • Fish & Seafood

Portugal seafoodPortugal is a seafaring nation with a well-developed fishing industry and this is reflected in the amount of fish and seafood eaten. The country has Europe’s highest fish consumption per capita and is among the top four in the world. You can get pretty much anything from crab, clams, barnacles, prawns or crayfish to mullet, tuna and the ubiquitous bacalhau (dried, salted cod). Portuguese bacalhau can be cooked in 365 different ways. Sardines (sardinhas) are close behind in popularity and can be grilled or barbequed, or there is the arroz de marisco, which is a bit like a seafood risotto crossed with a soup.

  • Meat

Portugal meatMeat is eaten all over the country. However, there are two areas famous for their meat dishes. The Alentejo is famous for its pork and Trás-os-Montes for its cured meats.
At the top of the pork pyramid is the prized porco preto (black pig) of the Alentejo, which grazes on fallen acorns from cork trees, which some say makes for its sweet taste. Following right behind porco preto is presunto (ham that, in the south, has been salted and dry-cured, and, if you’re in the north, also coated with a paste of paprika, garlic, and wine, then deeply smoked) and a dizzying collection of dry-cured, smoked sausages that include chouriço, made from pork, red-pepper paste, wine, garlic, and herbs; linguica (a thinner version of chouriço); the squat, lean salpiçao (a smoked sausage made from pork tenderloin that’s been marinated in white wine, garlic, and spices); morcela (blood sausage); farinheira (made from pork, wine, garlic, orange juice, and flour); and the lighter alheira, a variety that was originally made from only game and poultry but now occasionally contains some pork.

  • Bread and Cheese

portugal cheeseEach region will also have its specific bread and cheese. Whether it be the simple queijo fresco, a soft, white creamy cheese, or one of the world-class varieties such as Beira Alta’s Queijo de Serra, the Alentejo’s luscious Serpa, buttery Beja or piquant Évora, or the Azores’ Cheddar-like São Jorge. Every restaurant will place a basket of bread on the table as a starter. If it is not home-made, it will be fresh from the bakery next door.

  • Sweets and Pastries

Portugal pastryMany Portuguese sweets are a legacy of Moorish occupation, especially in the Algarve. The Portuguese enjoy rich egg-based desserts, often seasoned with spices such as cinnamon and vanilla. Perhaps the most populars are leite-creme (a set egg custard), arroz doce (a typical and popular rice pudding, a must for Christmas time parties) and aletria (a similar dish this time based upon a kind of vermicelli), often decorated with elaborate stencilled patterns of cinnamon powder. Cakes and pastries are also very popular and most towns have a local speciality, usually egg or cream based pastry. Try the “rebuçados da régua” in the city of Peso da Régua in the Douro region. If you travel to Lisbon, try the bola de Berlim and the pão-de-ló and stop by Belém to try the famous “Pastéis de nata” of Belém.

  • Wine

Portugal winesPortugal is famous for its fortified wines: Port and Madeira. Port comes from the Douro region and Madeira from the island. These are great wines for an aperitif or as a digestif after a meal. However, Portuguese wine culture and expertise does not end with its fortified wines. The Douro region has become one of the most famous regions in the world for its DOC wines. As is true of the chateaux in France, you will find wines denominated by Quintas in the Douro. The Alentejo and Dão regions make great red, white and rosé wines too. Enjoy a truly fascinating and intriguing wine tasting experience throughout Portugal!

  • Beer

Portugal beerBeer in Portugal has a long history, going as far back as the time of the ancient Roman province of Lusitania, where beer was commonly made and drunk. The word for beer in Portuguese is cerveja, during meals, the Portuguese will also drink beer. However, a good, fresh beer is most appreciated in the late afternoon, at sunset.
Sagres and Super Bock are Portugal’s biggest beer brands.

Tagged under:




Google Plus

Follow Me on Pinterest
  • Visão mag (June 2016)

    Pinned: 19 Jul 2016
  • Campervan hire surf road trip Basque country

    Pinned: 8 May 2016
  • Happy campers ... happy customers !!!

    Pinned: 8 May 2016
  • Happy campers ... happy customers !!!

    Pinned: 8 May 2016
  • Happy campers ... happy customers !!!

    Pinned: 8 May 2016
  • Happy campers ... happy customers !!!

    Pinned: 8 May 2016
  • Thanks for the video Mónica .. what a nice family road trip!

    Pinned: 18 Oct 2015
  • We are proud to be featured in the "NOS empresas" website!

    Pinned: 30 Sep 2015
  • BTT Madrid Lisbon with team sponsored by West Coast Campers .. the best campervan for outdoor activities!

    Pinned: 30 Sep 2015
  • SURF LIFE mag - Jun | 2015

    Pinned: 18 Sep 2015


Follow Me on Instagram
  • #westcoastcampers #portugal #campervantrip

    westcoastcampers: "#westcoastcampers #portugal #campervantrip"
  • Following the #lisbontram

    westcoastcampers: "Following the #lisbontram"
  • Lisbon tram meets our #campervan

    westcoastcampers: "Lisbon tram meets our #campervan"
  • The new premium #campervan from #westcoastcampers

    westcoastcampers: "The new premium #campervan from #westcoastcampers"
  • More babies ready to go out this weekend #westcoastcampers

    westcoastcampers: "More babies ready to go out this weekend #westcoastcampers"
  • #westcoastcampers the trip starts! #visitportugal

    westcoastcampers: "#westcoastcampers the trip starts! #visitportugal"
  • #westcoastcampers fligh high in #portugal

    westcoastcampers: "#westcoastcampers fligh high in #portugal"
  • #westcoastcampers #portugal #campervan

    westcoastcampers: "#westcoastcampers #portugal #campervan"
  • #westcoastcampers at the beach. nice view!

    westcoastcampers: "#westcoastcampers at the beach. nice view!"
  • #westcoastcampers #guincho #portugal #surfportugal #campervan

    westcoastcampers: "#westcoastcampers #guincho #portugal #surfportugal #campervan"