When Paulo and I had lunch in Porto last Saturday, I took a picture of this sign to give blog readers an idea of what the people of Porto consume for almoço (lunch). Little did I know this sign would work against me! But, I’m getting ahead of myself here…
At first I thought, excellent! This sign has pictures, which is good since I won’t have photos of anything beyond what we ordered. Except here on the left sign, starting at the top, we have caracóis, or snails. Problem: it’s a Lisbon thing. I don’t know why, but the northerners don’t eat snails. In fact, I don’t recall snails on menus in Central Portugal, either. I couldn’t tell you where the snail trail begins but if you have a hankering for them, head to Lisbon or further south.
Secondly, moelinhas, or chicken gizzards. Yes, they are a thing and Paulo’s a fan. Me, they’re not my first choice but I eat them and have cooked them at home. At the same time I also understand that for many people, chicken gizzards are about as appealing as a knuckle sandwich.
Thirdly, pimentos padron, which I showed you in the Saturday post, is a Galician dish and rare to see in Porto, even though we are relatively close by. The pimentos were tasty and I wish they were more popular here, but in the meantime I’m going to order them wherever they pop up because it’s still easier than driving to Galicia.
But there’s more on this sign: typos! Actually, I don’t know if it’s a typo or a word mix-up, but the sign says at the bottom “Don’t be full by these public works” while I’m sure that’s supposed to read “Don’t be fooled by these public works”, otherwise it doesn’t make any sense. Either way, the sign is there to assure people that they’re open for business despite their proximity to a construction zone (a hotel is getting built next door).
But without further ado, here’s what we ate:
The francesinha is a Porto dish, but it’s also appearing on menus in Lisbon and the rest of the country where it was previously ignored. A francesinha is obviously something you would not eat regularly because your arteries would revolt. But, like the Canadian sister dish poutine, it sure hits the spot if you’re hungry. This was my introduction to it.
This was my dish, Bacalhau à Braga, which is heavy on the cebolas (onions). God, I love onions.
Lastly, we have the bolo de bolacha, my dessert of choice and the basis of my quest to find the best one. This one doesn’t even crack the Top 10 (too dry!) so I won’t be ordering it next time. Too bad because it looks so good!
October 11, 2014
Album: Portugal [Autumn 2014]