Best Portuguese food you must try in your life
Oh Portugal, how can you be so tasty? You ask. How can such a small country have such a wide variety of dishes? Portuguese people love to eat, it's as simple as that! And this lovely country it’s indeed a food lover’s paradise! Take a look at our choice for the Portuguese dishes you have to try!
Pastéis de Nata or Pastéis de Belém
Well, you probably have already heard talk about Pastel de Nata, or even have tasted it! This delicious treasure was invented by monks in Lisbon’s Belém district and you will find them in every corner of Portugal! These very crisp tarts are filled with egg custard and you can sprinkle it with cinnamon. You have also heard talk about the Pastel de Belém? Discover the differences between Pastéis de Nata and Pastéis de Belém!
Soup! Portuguese people love soup and caldo verde become the most famous Portuguese soup of all. This green soup is made of potato, onion, kale, olive oil and with a few slices of sausage! Although it originates from the Minho region in Northern Portugal, you’ll see caldo verde on menus throughout the entire country. Perfect for the winter season!
Alheira is a smoked Portuguese sausage invented by the Jews in Portugal. In order to disguise as Christians during the Inquisition, the Jews pretend to eat pork, but they’re actually eating chicken, veal and rabbit meat. and boom! Alheira has born! Nowadays, you can find Alheira made from almost anything, from bacalhau to vegetarian. It’s your choice!
Tripas à moda do Porto
This is a signature dish of Porto, a city whose citizens are even nicknamed tripeiros because of their love for tripe. This consists basically in a stew of cow tripe, smoked meats and white beans served with rice. If there’s a food that represents the city, it is undoubtedly tripas à moda do Porto and the story behind this dish is charming!
Is one of the most famous sandwiches in Portugal and simply put, it’s a pork steak seasoned with garlic and spices in a bread roll. We know it sounds pretty basic, but this is an iconic cheap and delicious Portuguese snack, satisfying after-hours eaters! So, if you’re walking at night and see some Portuguese eating this sandwich, grab a beer and join them!
Cozido à Portuguesa
This is a comforting winter meal composed of boiled potatoes, carrots, a variety of meats, sausages, and vegetables. People say that the secret is to cook all the ingredients in one pot and in the same water, but added in different stages and at varying temperatures. On the Azores Island, you can find this dish cooked in hot springs of Furnas, called Cozido das Furnas!
This is another dish that born in Porto city. Similar to the croque-monsieur, a famous French sandwich, it’s believed the Francesinha was created by a Portuguese emigrant upon his return to Porto from France, read all the Francesinha story. A variation of ham, Linguica, and fresh sausage are layered in between two thick slices of bread and topped with melted cheese. What makes the francesinha unique is the secret sauce that each restaurant prepares in its own special way. So, maybe you need to explore some Francesinha restaurants, be prepared, there are a lot of them!
Codfish is the main staple in Portuguese cuisine, there are thousands of recipes in which cod is the star ingredient! Portuguese people are passionate about cod, doesn’t matter if it is salted or dried. Surprisingly, bacalhau is not native to the coastline of Portugal. Bacalhau Portugal is imported from Newfoundland or Norway. The most typical cod dishes are bacalhau à brás, bacalhau com natas, pastéis de bacalhau, bacalhau na brasa com batata a murro and pataniscas de bacalhau.
Queijo da Serra da Estrela
This delicious cheese has the name of the highest point in continental Portugal, Serra da Estrela. This is the most popular cheese in Portugal, called “King of Portuguese cheese” and maybe the one with the strongest flavor! This is made from sheep’s milk which results in a creamy and melted cheese served with a spoon!
Sardinhas assadas (Grilled sardines)
It is more than usual felt the smell of sardines being cooked on Portuguese streets, especially in summer festivals! The sardines are roasted whole on an open-fire grill and seasoned with a sprinkling of coarse salt. Usually, you will eat it with bread but it is also common to eat it with salad, grill bell peppers, and boiled potatoes. Sardines are also a symbol of Portuguese culture, there are plenty of souvenirs that include this icon!