Alcatra, traditional dish of the island...and more

Alcatra, which literally means rump in Portuguese is the traditional dish of this island.  It is a Portuguese pot roast cooked in a clay pot or clay tile dish.  Most families will make this at home, and all the traditional restaurants on the island serve this...usually in a portion for 2 since it is a family style dish to begin with.  It is usually beef with some pork or bacon, but now places will also make alcatra with fish.  Our next door neighbor, Maria, made some for Ryan just before Christmas and her husband brought it over to us, still hot, right from the oven.  There is not vegetables in here, just beef and bacon/fat.  This is what it looks like, homemade style...

He said the meat was very tender, as it is supposed to be, and the broth stuff was basically fat.  The white pieces that look like they could be potato, is really just bacon/fat chunks.  There was also a nice bone inside, and we let the dog enjoy this.  If you are interested, here is a RECIPE I found online while researching the history of the dish.  Most websites I found were in Portuguese so I have limited additional information on the rest of the history.

This is what alcatra looks like when ordered at a restaurant.  The portion is for two and this is known as a clay tile, where ours at home was in a clay pot.

On to other foods we have had over the past few days...

On Christmas eve day we wandered around Praia before grabbing a bite to eat at Pizza OK.  It's not the best pizza ever, but not the worst either.  We also get the veggie pizza.

Can't resist the sweets...

The day after Christmas we went to make me nuts since we didn't want to drive around and see what was open and breakfast foods sounded good even though we already had some breakfast.

My donut choice, very festive...

Ryan had an apple filled cinnamon coated donut.

As always they have a nice display of cakes.

As I was taking this picture I noticed something just above the case...Can you spot it???

That's right, they actually sell DD coffee there.  I thought they were a total knock off of DD, but now I wonder if they are related or just really really really like Dunkin Donuts, pink and orange and all!

So now we are stuck in a massive wind storm with the occassional down pour of rain.  The poor dog got caught in it and lucky for me I had put on rain pants and a jacket before I went out.  It wasn;t raining when I stepped out of the door, but then it just rained, almost like hail.  So, I think we will probably stay in today and see what is and isn't leaking since we just found a leak in Ryan's office.  I am off to help him now?

QUESTION:  Do you get high winds where you live?  Do you live somewhere that experiences lots of rain or has a "rainy season"?

11 comments:

Nicci@NiftyEats said...

Rain is comes and goes, but this past summer it rained 2 weeks straight...not fun. I like the looks of that veggie pizza!

Anonymous said...

I love seeing all the island foods! :)

We usually get a few big storms around here but really not that much rain over all... And I guess the winds can get quite strong closer to the coast, but that's several miles closer to the ocean from where we are...

I hope you were able to fix the leak and don't find any more... Stay dry and warm! :)

Anonymous said...

That pizza looks yummy!! Not so sure about the soup haha. And I can't ever seem to resist sweets either!

Emily said...

alcatra sounds really interesting. i love hearing about traditional, cultural dishes.

we don't get winds that are too strong here. st. louis is super rainy, though. i had to invest in more running rain gear!

Rachel said...

What do you expect from a pizza place called Pizza OK? Of course it's going to live up to it's name and be... Just ok. Haha

Anonymous said...

The Alcatra looks WONDERFUL, Melinda! So do the sweets, yummm! We got lots of snow, but no crazy winds or seasons!

Gina said...

Alcatra is new to me, thanks for sharing the background and recipe! Are you ever upset that you can't try these foods? Probably not...as you chose to be a vegetarian so maybe that was a dumb question. The donut looks yummmmmy!

We don't experience high winds often. I don't like a lot of wind because it messes up my hair...haha!

Tricia said...

We get a lot of rain during hurrican season.

Mari said...

I never heard of that dish before but I am going to ask my coworker about it because he is from there.

We had crazy winds here too...my car was bouncing around the highway

Anonymous said...

uh...somehow, drinking bacon fat doesn't appeal to me. Cooking it, oh yes, but drinking it? oh dear....

I hate rain! Eee!

Anonymous said...

I'm glad you found my blog again!
Thanks for showing the info about alcatra. As an RD, I think it is always good to hear about foods from different cultures.

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