At Casa Aleixo in Campanhã


Ramiro: It’s a myth that Portuguese food is heavy. It’s the way you cook it that makes it heavier or not. The development of food was in parallel with that of transport in the area. First we had to have this heavy, substantial food to feed the people who were workers, and transportation was by horsedrawn carriage. The people needed to be strong. We cooked pigs with their blood and very heavy stuff. Then the buses and cars started to come, the clientele improved and so did the food. We started cooking lighter and better dishes. We started cooking octopus, which was something people didn’t use to have. It wasn’t common. My father created his own recipes for Octopus and Pescada (hake). He invented a unique way of cutting the fish in filets. Now I am the one who does it, but it’s a family secret. I don’t show anyone. I only teach my daughter. She still learns how to do it perfectly. Now I import hakes from South Africa. They have the best ones. I bring 500 kilos per month!