Making a bean stew is nothing new in any culture. The Portuguese use pork traditionally, but in some regions, mainly in the south, variations include squid and chicken, with both red or white bean variations. In the north of Portugal's, Trás-os-Montes region, a very popular variation uses red kidney beans and cabbage or kale. Traditionally inexpensive cuts of meat were slow cooked to make them more appealing. I love my equally delicious versions with leaner meats like chicken and squid, but that's another post. The French call thiers, Cassoulet, using duck and small white beans, like the haricot variety. In Brazil, like Portugal, pig is used. The variation comes in with the beans of choice, black beans. Traditionally dry beans are used and cooked in the stock, but I use canned cooked beans with great success. In Portugal, lard is used while in France, Goose fat. As you can see, the differences and similarities all add up to one soul satisfying dish. This is my recipe and the variations are many. The specialty Portuguese sausages are now readily available online. If you live in greater London, you will certainly have no trouble finding a Portuguese shop. Serve with white rice, a gutsy red wine, and plenty of crusty bread. As winter seems to be quickly approaching, this is just what you want. Enjoy XOXO
Feijoada à Portuguesa ❦ Portuguese Style Bean Stew
4 Cans of white Cannelini beans 3 drained, 1 undrained
(I like Napolina brand)
1 Chouriço sausage, skin removed and sliced into 1/4 inch rounds
1 Morcela sausage, sliced into rounds. Leave skin on as it is crumbly
200 g. Bacon smoked, cut into cubes
400 g. Pork shoulder, cut into bite size pieces
250 g. Pork loin baby back ribs, whole
1 Pig's trotter (optional), whole
200 g. Pork tenderloin (fillet), cut into bite sized pieces
2 tbsp. Lard
2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
3 large carrots, peeled and cut into rounds
3 Bay leaves
2 tbsp. Red wine vinegar
125 ml. Dry white wine
1 Large onion, finely chopped
4 Garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 tbsp. Tomato paste double concentrate
6 Thyme fresh sprigs
30 g. Flat leaf parsly to finish
2 tsp. Sweet paprika
Enough fresh water or chicken stock to cover meats by 1 inch, skimming the scum as it rises.
Salt and pepper to taste
1. In a large pot on high heat add lard and olive oil.
Add chouriço and bacon and fry while stirring for 30 seconds. Add Pork shoulder and pork tenderloin and fry in hot oil to sear. About 2 mins.
2. Lower heat to medium, add onion, garlic, and bay leaves. Saute 1 minute. Add tomato paste and paprika, stir to incorporate, letting it fry gently for 15 seconds or so.
3. Add white wine, mixture will sizzle. Let cook 1 minute.
4. Add remaining meats and carrots to pot along with thyme spring.
5. Add enough water or chicken stock to cover meats by 1 inch.
This will vary depending on your pots height and width.
I will usually prepare 1 litre, and add more as needed.
6. Let meats cook on low to medium heat for about an hour, adding more stock as needed. After an hour, meat should be tender and cooked beautifully.
7. Add 3 cans of drained beans and 1 can with beans and packing water. Cook a further 30 mins. until thickened. just before serving, stir in chopped fresh parsley.
Another version below made with chicken