Portuguese gourmet

Francesinha

If one refers to the Portuguese landscape, one can still find various evidences of the rich history and tales of valor and prosperity that are woven in the soils of the country. Portuguese gourmet refers to those delicacies which have a rich cultural heritage or are intricately associated with the historical growth of the country.

It is interesting to note that the food habits and cuisine of a country are often significantly influenced by certain practices or conventions followed in the neighboring countries via immigrants.  The origin of francesinha can be attributed to a French migrant who in the 1960s is said to have tried to incorporate the croquet-monsieur to Portuguese taste by means of the francesinha though several other evidences go to prove that the francesinha was pre-existent since the 19th century. The francesinha is a Portuguese delicacy which is rooted in the Porto region and is constituted by scores of ingredients like, linguica, steak or roasted meat, wet-cured ham, molten cheese as topping with tomato or beer sauce and even sausages like chipolata are also used in its preparation. If the francesinha is composed of French fries or egg, then it is referred to as francesinha especial. Francesinhas can also be cooked along with pork, tuna, bacalhau and chicken together with some vegetables. Northern Portugal boasts of various eating joints and restaurants which offer francesinhas while in the southern part of Portugal, the francesinhas are nit so common and are available only at a handful of places. Porto is the traditional area while beach areas also offer francesinhas. A unique francesinha sauce comprised of fillings and bread, called francesinha poveira is a distinct produce of the Povoa do Varzim located in the northern part of Porto. Francesinha can be used to prepare a newer food preparation called pica-pau.