People from Portugal are mostly varied. Since they come from different places, they will try to serve you with varieties of foods. Traditional Portuguese food favors a lot of chicken, pork and seafood over beef which is paired with rice and a variety of beans. This is mainly because beef is more expensive compared to pork and chicken. Expect a lot of rice dishes because almost every single meal is served with it.
The combination of flavors make Portuguese dishes hearty but it can also be a bit caloric. People in rural areas of Portugal raise their own animals. This is why they make sure that they will be able to make the most out of their meat. They have enchidos which are sausages stuffed with almost every part of an animal just to make sure that no meat is wasted.
Portuguese cuisine is mainly composed of different varieties of soups and stews. They also like eating salad but instead of a dressing, they serve it with salty vinaigrette. They are also particularly fond of eating Bacalhau which is salted codfish. They say that even those who aren’t really fond of eating fish still like the Bacalhau. Their dishes are a bit saltier and spicier compared to other dishes. Most dishes are based on olive oil and natural products instead of heavy creams.
The Portuguese are also known for their amazing bread and pastries. A freshly-baked bread in a panaderia in Portugal is one of the best things you can ever have. There are also a lot of Portuguese dishes that have incorporated Brazilian and African style of cooking. Everyone who loves to eat will definitely enjoy Portuguese food.
- Cozido a Portuguesa (Traditonal Portuguese Hot Pot)
Cozido a Portuguesa is a classic dish that is mostly made up of boiled meat. This dish is also dubbed as the mother of all stews. This dish takes a while to prepare. It will depend on the weight and thickness of your choice of meat. Some prefer meats that are almost falling of the bone while others want those that are less tender.
Originally, this dish uses the cuts of meats that are cheaper such as a pig’s snout, feet, ear and blood sausage. However, if these particular parts disgust you, then you could always go to a sampling of meats such as beef, chicken and pork and just add sausage and vegetables.
- Arroz De Pato (Portuguese Duck Rice)
If you don’t particularly fancy pork meat then perhaps a duck dish would entice you. Arroz De Pato is perfect for those who are looking for a Portuguese dish that is not too complicated. Its great flavor comes from the rich duck stock absorbed by the rice which perfectly complements the shredded duck and chorizo chunks. This is the ultimate easy and quick meal that you have to keep an eye out for if you go to Portugal.
- Bacalhau a Bras (Scrambled Salted Cod With Eggs and Potatoes)
Bacalhau a Bras is the ultimate Portuguese comfort food. It uses bacalhau (also known as salted codfish) which is one of the staple dishes of Portugal. It is shredded and sautéed in a pan along with other ingredients such as potatoes, eggs, black olives, onions and parsley.
- Ameijoas a Bulhao Pato (Clams in White Wine)
The Ameijoas a Bulhao Pato is one of the most popular appetizers served in many Portuguese restaurants. These clams are cooked in butter, herbs, garlic, pepper, salt, olive oil and cilantro, mostly served with Portuguese bread that is dipped into the sauces. This dish can be also enjoyed with beer.
- Caldo Verde (Portuguese Kale Soup)
Caldo Verde is considered as the national dish of Portugal. The soup gets its distinctive texture and character from the finely-cut slices of kale. This is best served as a light supper during cold winters. It is normally served with cornbread for dipping and pork sausage (also known as “linguica”).