Yes ! Another recipe from Antónia, this time from the Alentejo.

This post is also available in: Nederlands (Dutch)

Antónia and the Alentejo

As promised in my first post about Antónia and her restaurant “A Vela” I am delighted to share recipe no. 2. This time it’s an original recipe from the Alentejo, the region above the Algarve,  where Antónia was born and raised.  

View of a field in Alentejo region with rolls of straw at sunset.

The Alentejo region

You will be bewitched! Portugal’s largest region, covering a third of the country, truly captivates. Think dry, golden plains, rolling hillsides and lime-green vines. A rugged coastline, traditional whitewashed villages, marble towns and majestic medieval cities with a population of proud people still following traditional craftsmanship.  I really love this peaceful region with its friendly population, delicious food and pure products.

The Alentejo is in south-central and southern Portugal. In Portuguese its name means “beyond” (além) the Tagus river” (Tejo). The landscape is glorious, eye-catching shrubs, native cork oaks, holly/holm oaks,  olive trees (some hundreds of years old) and grapevines. In the north of the region you will find traditional livestock farming while to the south agriculture is more prevalent.


The Alentejo is home of the world’s most important area for the growing of cork. Cork-oak, known in Portugal as “sobreiro”, has been grown commercially in the region for the past 300 years. Cork has long since ceased to be used just for bottles, nowadays you will find many other useful items such as flooring, chopping boards, handbags etc and also modern fashion. 

Cheese, wine and smoked hams

Well-known products from this region are the delicious traditional cheeses, wines, smoked hams (called Presunto) and sausages, not to be missed! Everywhere in the Alentejo you will find beautiful, medieval villages with small restaurants providing amazing cuisine. The Alentejo is renowned for traditional food with plentiful gastronomic delights – pork, game, bread, cheese, wine and, along the coastline, amazing seafood

Antonia´s Migas de Espargos com Entrecosto

This regional dish is called ” Migas de Espargas com Entrecosto” (Asparagus, Migas (breadcrumbs) with pork ribs ) The Portuguese word “Migas” means crumbs, most migas recipes are made with bread crumbs from traditional bread that is 2 days old and quite hard!

Restaurant “A Vela”

Migas de Espargos com Entrecosto

Ingredients: (serves 2)

  • 500gr of ribs cut in small pieces,
  • 2 tablespoons of paprika paste – red bell pepper paste that is an integral part of Portuguese cuisine …..recipe at the bottom of the page
  • Half a chorizo sausage
  • 350gr of green asparagus
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 300 gr of hard bread (2 days old),
  • 4 tablespoons of olive oil,
  • 3 cloves of garlic,
  • 1oo ml of white wine
  • 1 orange


Season the meat with the paprika paste, garlic and wine and set aside to marinate. 

Trim the woody end from the asparagus and discard. Wash and cut the remaining asparagus in half. Bring a pan of water to the boil and add the asparagus for 8 minutes and then drain. Keep the water.

Make breadcrumbs from the bread slices and soak in the water the asparagus was cooked in.

Slice the orange. Slice the chorizo


Fry the chorizo slices, without oil, in a heavy-based frying pan. When cooked – about 2 minutes – scoop them out of the frying pan and keep warm.

Now add the oil with the garlic to the frying pan, once hot, tip in the ribs and marinade and fry for about 7 minutes until they are browned and the meat is very tender. Again scoop them out of the pan and keep warm.

Fry the asparagus in the remaining olive oil in the same frying pan, scoop out and keep warm.

Add the bread  (being careful to squeeze out the excess liquid) and let it fry on medium to high heat stirring it constantly until you can shape it into a roll.

Serve the breadcrumb roll in the center of a plate and spoon the ribs around the edge. Decorate the top with the asparagus pieces and slices of fried chorizo and place the orange at the corners – they help to cut the fat a little. Finished!!


Bom apetito !

Recipe Paprika Paste

If you can´t get the paprika paste from this recipe in your region then follow the recipe below

4 red pepper bells, olive oil, 2 garlic cloves, sea salt

Wash the red pepper bells, remove the seeds and cut them in slices. Bring to boil until the peppers are soft.
Drain well and place the red bell peppers in a blender with 2 cloves of garlic and blend until you have a paste. Add salt to the peppers in the following proportions: 2 measures of paprika + 1 measure of sea salt.
Put this in jars and cover with a thread of olive oil to preserve. You can also add some oregano to the paste to give it more flavour.

This post is also available in: Nederlands (Dutch)


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