The traditional dishes of Portugal are not well known to residents of other countries, because even in Western Europe, Portuguese restaurants are not numerous and are found mainly in metropolitan cities. For this reason, most Russians do not understand this issue. For example, they do not know that Portuguese cuisine is uncomplicated at the level of main dishes, but is diverse in terms of desserts and pastries.
The main dish of all times of the Portuguese people is Bakalau. Paradoxically, the dried and salted cod, which is the basis of the Portuguese national dish, is caught off the coast of Northern Europe and North America. Some say that there are 365 ways to cook bakalyau – one for each day of the year. Others even call a number close to two thousand. Still others say that every married lady comes up with her own recipe, because without this she would not be married. Of course, these are legends that are difficult to verify. Portuguese culinary experts considered that there were about 450 recipes.
Bakalyau is served with various side dishes, including potatoes or just bread.
The national Portuguese soup is named Caldu Verde. It includes potatoes, cabbage, pork sausage with paprika (choriso), onions and garlic. The soup is seasoned with olive oil and salt.
Feijoada – a dish of beans, various types of meat and cassava flour. Spice is added to the feijoad and seasoned with pepper sauce. The dish is served in a clay pot with cabbage, rice, slices of orange. There are many recipes. Some of them use seafood instead of meat.
The meat dish, Cusidou Portuguese, is a mixture of several types of meat and smoked meats. Before cooking a steak or barbecue, meat is usually marinated in wine or port.
Fish dishes and seafood
The composition of fish dishes includes sardines and tuna. Shellfish, octopus and crab are also popular. Fresh sardines are fried on the grill.
Sweets usually contain large amounts of sugar and egg yolk, often cinnamon, marzipan and coconut. One of the most popular desserts is macaroons with sour cream.
The legendary Belene pastel de nata cake deserves a separate story.
In Portugal, they drink port wine, white and red wines, vinho verde young wine, and ginjina cherry liquor.
All of the above are locally produced.
In recent years, the Portuguese authorities began issuing licenses for the production of medronium – traditional vodka from the fruits of strawberry tree.
Prices in catering establishments
In a Portuguese cafe, the bill per person is about 5 euros, and in a regular Portuguese restaurant 15-20 euros. In expensive restaurants, an account can go up to 30-40 euros or more.
From 12:30 to 13:30 in Portugal comes the traditional lunch time. At this time, catering establishments are crowded with visitors, large lines are formed in them.
Despite the apparent simplicity of the dishes, they have a delicious taste that is pleasing to foreign guests.
The mastery of local culinary specialists lies in the use of seasonings, as well as their perseverance in conducting labor-intensive culinary operations. One soaking salted cod and pickling meat in wine is worth it! As a result, the simplest ingredients acquire a refined taste.