Let’s stimulate our palate with a gastronomic tour in Portugal with Michelle. Portugal´s gastronomy is as rich and varied as its landscapes. The most distinctive feature of Portuguese cuisine comes from the sea.
ALERT for Seafood lovers! If you are a seafood person, you will be amazed with all the options. Portugal is a seafaring nation. The country has Europe´s highest fish consumption per capita and is among the top four in the world for this inidicator. Fish can be served in so many ways: grilled, boiled, fried, deep-fried, stewed, roasted, and steamed. They use a wide variety of spices that includes fiery chili peppers, black pepper,cinnamon, vainilla and saffron. Olive oil, herbs, parsley, bay leaf and garlic are widely used too in Portuguese gastronomy.
The most consumed in Portugal is cod (Bacalhau). If you like this fish is definiltly the place where you should eat it. It is said that there are more than 365 ways to cook cod, one for every day of the year. There is also very famous meat dishes and desserts.
The must-try according to Michelle’s suggestions are:
-Salted cod in any way including carpaccio and fritters!
-Boiled and roasted octopus
-Monkfish stew with rice
-Cozido a portuguesa
-Tenderloin cooked over an open fire
-Black pig and ribs
-Peri Peri chicken
-Uma Bica! (Expresso coffee)
-Portuguese custard tarts
Speaking of other Portuguese gastronomy essentials:
-Olive oil is of prime quality and the basis of Portuguese gastronomy. Is considered liquid gold for many many international chefs.
-Ohhhvation to the cheeses! Queijo da Serra (From Serra de Estrela) tops the bill, all the cheeses from center of Portugal, Alentejo and the Azores are delicious.
When it comes to wine, the whole country produces wine. Portugal is a country with strong wine tradition, and its local custom to match each dish to the right wine. The excellent quality of its wines is recognised accross the world. The most popular is Port wine.
There are several styles of Port, including red, white, rosé and an aged style called Tawny Port. Port is a sweet wine with flavors of raspberry, blackberry, caramel, cinnamon and chocolate sauce. Is most commonly enjoyed as a dessert wine because it is rich and sweet.
A tour to some of the cellars is a must too. Even if wine isn’t your thing, the cellars are an interesting part of history and trade links in the past.
I’m a seafood and wine lover so definitely Portugal is on the top of my list for sure. That’s the beauty of travelling and sharing travelling experiences, we get to learn about things we would have no idea about otherwise.
Thanks Michelle for sharing your Portugal trip experience with all of us!
See also previous post where Michelle shares her recommendations about Portugal: