What to Try in Portugal: 10 Famous Dishes
Portugal, the beautiful country on the western part of the Iberian Peninsula, ranks among the most popular tourist destinations in the world. In addition to its stunning beaches and cultural riches, Portugal takes pride in its inventive and delicious cuisine. This destination guide will introduce you to 10 of the most popular and flavorful dishes that you must try during your visit.
- Bacalhau à Brás (Brazilian-Style Salted Cod) – This dish is a traditional Portuguese specialty best described as a warm and cozy combination of salty salted cod, soft potatoes, and aromatic spices. This recipe has a long history and is considered a staple of Portuguese cuisine.
- Porco da Laje (Roast Pork) – This dish is beloved throughout the country, with the pork roasted until tender and juicy, offering a unique flavor. Pork is a part of many traditional Portuguese dishes and is served with various sauces and side dishes.
- Feijoada (Portuguese Bean Stew) – This hearty and rich bean stew is known as the “Portuguese national staple.” It combines juicy beans with potatoes and carrots in a tempting harmony of flavors. Delicious Feijoada is part of the lunch tradition in Portugal and is usually enjoyed with homemade bread.
- Pastel de Nata (Portuguese Custard Tart) – Under the sweet crust of these small pies hides a creamy temptation that you must try while in Portugal. This popular dessert is often accompanied by a cup of coffee and is a great way to have breakfast or enjoy a snack after lunch.
- Frigideira do Mar (Seafood Delight) – Portugal is known for its fresh seafood, and Frigideira do Mar includes squid, mussels, and shrimp, cooked in oil, garlic, and aromatic spices. This dish combines the flavors of the ocean with Mediterranean tastes and is often served in coastal restaurants in Portugal, accompanied by fresh bread.
- Amêijoas (Easter Bunnies) – This fun and sweet dessert is part of the Easter traditions in Portugal, providing moments of joy and sweetness. Amêijoas are presented as small pastry bunnies covered with a delicious chocolate glaze. These “bunnies” are often part of Easter gifts and are enjoyed by both young and old.
- Caldereada (Portuguese Beef Stew) – This warm dish is prepared in a pot and includes beef, seasoned with paprika, garlic, and bay leaves. Caldereada represents the perfect combination of tenderness and flavor, which is a source of pride for Portuguese chefs.
- Bifana (Pork Sandwiches) – This street snack is characterized by crispy pork cutlets that are combined with fresh bread and spices. Bifana is a popular choice for a quick lunch or a light snack when you’re on the go and want to try something tasty and nourishing.
- Roasted Red Peppers – Cabidela – This appetizer offers a rich flavor of roasted red peppers, enriched with butter and spices. The peppers are roasted until they become soft and aromatic, then sliced into small pieces and seasoned with garlic and butter.
- Sardinhas Conzaladu (Sardine Salad) – This refreshing salad uses fresh sardines, tomatoes, onions, and olive oil to create the perfect addition to a Portuguese lunch. The sardines are carefully cooked and combined with fresh vegetables and aromatic spices to offer a harmonious taste of the sea.
Portuguese cuisine offers a wealth of flavors and tastes. During your visit to Portugal, do not miss the opportunity to try these famous and delicious dishes that are part of the country’s cultural richness. Combining traditional recipes with innovative ideas, Portuguese cuisine will captivate you with its unique flavors and aromas, creating an unforgettable culinary experience for every palate.