Pasto

Cooking from a Portuguese perspective

Archive for the ‘Vegetables’ Category

Peixinhos da Horta

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Literally translated as ‘small fish from the garden’ these unassuming delicacies have a bit of a world history. Portuguese missionaries traveling to Japan in the 16th century shared the practice of frying green beans in a light batter. The Japanese loved it so much that the practice became widespread and tempura (related to the Portuguese word tempero) became famous the world over. This recipe spreads the global reach of these ‘vegetable fish’ by using tapioca flour from Brazil. Tapioca is a gluten free flour made from casava and makes for an excellent alternative to wheat flour. The search for the perfect batter is a life-time quest and at the moment we think this one is the winner. Although this is a fried food, the wheat free flour and the fact we fry in olive oil makes it guilt free and a healthy starter or side dish.
Peixinhos da Horta

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Written by Pedro Rebelo

September 10, 2017 at 5:05 pm

Bean Soup/Sopa de Feijão

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Soups are an essential part of a Portuguese traditional meal. Although the most famous is Caldo Verde, Portugal has a lot to offer when it comes to the magic transformation of a few simple vegetables into a tasty and nutritious meal. Soups are normally a simple affair with only one rule – excellent ingredients – just get seasonal veg at the market and you’ll be fine.
This recipe is for a soup that is traditionally from the north of the country that can be a substantial meal in itself. The Portuguese are rather particular about the quality of beans and there is much to choose from when it comes to varieties. This recipe uses a brown coloured bean called manteiga which is similar to pinto beans. Although you can get beans already cooked in a jar, this soup needs the real thing as most of the flavour will come from the water used to cook the beans.
As with most dried beans, soak overnight in plenty of water (you can soak a larger quantity and then freeze the cooked beans to use in other recipes).
Bean Soup

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Written by Pedro Rebelo

November 24, 2016 at 2:10 pm

Roasted Quince/Marmelos Assados

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Quince is the thing to look out for when you begin to feel those long sunsets at the end of the summer. This rather acidic, not exactly good looking fruit grows in many places around the world but is often unappreciated. For the Portuguese this is pure seasonal gold! We rush to the local markets and grab the best fruit at the best price and at the right time! Quince, marmelos in Portuguese, are the quintessencial fruit for preserves – marmelada, which became the english marmelade. The word marmelada first appeared in writing by the pen of the Portuguese bard Gil Vicente in 1521. Don’t be fooled by the story that Mary Queen of Scots, who used to eat marmelada when feeling low (who wouldn’t?), invented the word marmelada through her “Marie est malade” (Mary is sick)! In any case, this post is not about marmelada but an alternative way of preparing this delicious fruit which, I guarantee, will become the best friend of your Autumn Sunday roasts.

Marmelos Assados

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Written by Pedro Rebelo

October 1, 2016 at 9:22 pm

Mushrooms with Queijo da Serra/Cogumelos com Queijo da Serra

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A deliciously simply recipe for a starter. Easy to make many of them so ideal for a dinner party (just double or triple the recipe). Queijo da Serra is (some say) the best Portuguese cheese but competition is fierce… I must admit last time I made this, I had fun stuffing some mushrooms with serra and others with Queijo de Azeitão… Diners seemed to have fun trying to guess which one was which and by the time I arrived for a proper tasting they were all gone…
As with all simple preparations, good quality ingredients are key so pick carefully!
Mushrooms

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Written by Pedro Rebelo

September 6, 2016 at 1:53 pm

Posted in Recipes/Receitas, Vegetables

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Pan sautéed potatoes/Batatas passadas pela sertã

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A simple and delicious way of using left over boiled potatoes. “Passadas pela sertã” literally means passed through the frying pan. The olive oil, paprika and garlic lend the potatoes a deep and robust flavour as well as an irresistible crispy texture. This makes an excellent side dish for grilled meats.

Sauteed Potatoes

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Written by Pedro Rebelo

May 2, 2016 at 11:00 am

Cauliflower and Quinoa Tabouleh

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A simple and super healthy side dish for meat or fish… Can be eaten hot or cold.
Tabouleh

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Written by Pedro Rebelo

April 16, 2016 at 4:55 pm

Chestnuts/Castanhas

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Autumn in Portugal brings lots of goods, just when you think the plentiful summer has come to an end. With the colourful harvest of the vineyards arrive the chestnuts and the magustos, open air festivities celebrating the new wine with chestnuts roasted on a bonfire. Used as compliments to roast meats or as key ingredients in soups long before the potato was introduced from the new world, the chestnut is now a delicacy usually appreciated after a meal. This is the simplest and perhaps the most rewarding way of cooking chestnuts. While traditional roast chestnuts bring out a crispy and fluffy texture, boiling them brings out their unique sweet and nutty flavour.

Read about São Martinho, the chestnut day par excellence!

chestnuts

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Written by Pedro Rebelo

October 25, 2015 at 12:46 pm