When preparing for our trip to Portugal I soon realised that the Portuguese cuisine is not per-se vegan-friendly. With over 1,700 km of coastline and a pretty rugged backcountry, the typical diet is rich in fish, seafood and cheese. I decided I would eat chips and salad very often.
However, as it turned out, it wasn’t all that bad (and sometimes worse). I didn’t need to starve and had I been more prepared and willing to cook, everything would have been easy and smooth, even as we left Lisbon (where – just like in most bigger cities now – there is small but wonderful veggie-based restaurant scene).
In the end, I cooked once, ate chips 3 or 4 times, had 2 salads – and the other days we found me something I liked.
Especially, in the South-East (close to Spain) a lot of places will offer tapas-style food – either as starters or as a main dish. If fat is used for cooking, all restaurants ensured me they were using olive oil. Perfect for vegans!
Therefore, we savoured:
- Mushrooms sautéed in olive oil with garlic and oregano
- Potatoes with rosemary and Tavira sea salt and tomato sauce with allspice
- Olives in olive oil
- Carrots with garlic, ginger, paprika, harissa and coriander
- Home-made bread
Can you see myself dipping away on the olive oil?