Alentejo Gastronomy that you will enjoy

Alentejo gastronomy is mainly what locals used to have on their lands into the interior or more fish dishes along the coastline. However, it is a fact that in this wine region in the South of Portugal you will taste amazing food dishes.
What is the reason for the amazing Alentejo gastronomy? The hands of local habitants and local ingredients. In the past locals used to cook with ingredients they found in the fields, or the results of farming processes.
In the past, life in the Alentejo was really hard and the economic resources of the people were rare. Along centuries Alentejo was seen as a farming area, mainly vines and wheat, depending on the century and years we speak. Romans, Greeks, Phoenicians always saw this piece of land for farming or trade commerce. Even the story “a sardine for 2 or 3 people” was true, due to low economic resources.

Alentejo Gastronomy, dishes you should taste

Perhaps for this reason the traditional gastronomy from Alentejo is simple and creative, mixing ingredients from the season with dishes from cultural influence along centuries. Tasting the local gastronomy, meat, fish or event desserts, are experiences that are worth the trip to Alentejo flavours. Of course, we cannot forget the amazing wines and many other products, such as cheeses to enjoy the whole meal.

Alentejo Gastronomy, Pork Meat Alentejo Style

Pork Meat Alentejo Style

Based on pork meat, potatoes and sweet paprika is perhaps one classic even on Portuguese gastronomy. The potatoes are cuted in small cubes and fried, while the chunks of Pork Meat are mixed with a marinade of paprika during 2 to 4 hours previous to the cooking process. 

Besides these three ingredients the traditional recipe also has garlic, sea salt, vegetable oil (to fry the potatoes), bay leaf, chopped coriander to garnish, chopped pickles. It has an amazing taste and is easy to cook. 

The extra step is basically to wash the clams. After open them in a pan with some wine, unions, lemon and mix it in the end. You should take out the ones that are close.

Alentejo Gastronomy, Açorda Alentejana

Açorda à Alentejana

Typical soup from Alentejo, which unlike most soups is not cooked. Surprised? Indeed. Açorda recipe is not universal, is that kind of recipe that changes from area to area in Alentejo ( and the whole country) and you might find a different recipe from family to family.

Açorda à Alentejana is based on salt, oil, boiling water, sliced bread, garlic. To this mixture, you should add aromatic herbs such as pennyroyal or coriander. Should be served with amazing fresh fish ( fried or boiled ), cod or egg (boiled or poached).

Thinking on this diverse ingredients, you can have many combinations, the most common perhaps will be poached egg (interior), thinking of the rural environment of locals during centuries. However, along the coast, the use of fish is more common.

Alentejo Gastronomy, Tomato Soup

Tomato Soup

Tomato soup is perfect for winter, however it has a a little bit of acidity, which you can add some sugar to remove the acidity.
Not creamy, has chopped onions, olive oil. Tomatoes, water, basil, bay leaf and of course, sea salt.
It can be more creamy or more thicker, depending on the water you add and preference.

These are just some of the rich culinary dishes available in Alentejo, which you can easily make a food and wine pairing with some of the best local wines. Even food pairings with Talha Wines ( in Portuguese vinhos da talha), however if you love sweets, we have good news. The list of sweets or desserts are huge and we will post it in the future.