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Prego no Pão ❦ Portuguese "Nailed" Steak Sandwich

If I had to eat one thing everyday for the rest of my life, beef would be it! I love it!! This recipe is a classic of Portugal, with many claiming origins in Lisbon, it is the epitome of Portuguese "tasca" culture. It is also widely consumed in many of Portugal's former colonies, such as Mozambique and Angola.

I suspect the name comes from the pounding of the meat and them "nailing" the garlic to it with the mallet. In tascas they were not using prime cuts of beef, so the mallet was the best way to get the meat thin and a little tender. This is a minute steak. You do not want to overcook this, even if you use sirloin like I do. My recipe is delicious and the marinade really makes it. Many places do nothing but add bay, garlic , salt and pepper. Here is the difference between average and magnificent. I promise it will be the best steak sandwich you have ever eaten. They must marinate a minimum of 1 hour and no more than 3. This is very important, otherwise the vinegar will overpower the meat. This is how my mother used to do it and I haven't changed a thing. Carlos always has to have his with an oozing fried egg. My mother would fry the egg in the same frying pan she used to make the beef. It was the best! Top yours with whatever you fancy. I like mine with a little piri-piri hot sauce and American French's mustard. You need a nice bread roll to soak up all the lovely juices.

Prego no Pão ❦ Portuguese "Nailed" Steak Sandwich

Serves 4

8 Sirloin steaks, either sliced very thin or pounded thin *see pics

4 Bay leaves cut in half

6 Cloves of garlic, sliced thin

1 tbsp. Sweet paprika, Pimentón dulce

1 tsp. Garlic powder

60 ml. White wine

50 ml. Red wine vinegar

30 ml. Extra virgin olive oil

Salt and pepper to taste

To fry

1 tbsp. Butter to fry

2 tbsp. Extra virgin olive oil to fry

To finish

4 big ciabatta or sourdough style bread rolls, sliced in half and lightly toasted

Mustard, to taste

Hot sauce to taste, like Tabasco

* 4 Free-range eggs, optional

In a bowl combine steak and all 8 ingredients including salt and pepper to taste. Combine well set aside for a minimum of 1 hour and only up to 3 hours.

When ready to make, heat a large frying pan, on high heat, with butter and olive oil.

Fry the steaks for 30 seconds on each side.

Do not crowd the pan, I fry mine in two batches.

Feel free to add bay leaves and all the garlic cloves from marinade to frying pan.

Place two steaks in each roll, don't forget to scoop up all the delicious garlic, discard bay leaves.

Drizzle liberally with mustard.

*If making with fried eggs, crack the 4 eggs directly into the frying pan and lower heat, cover pan and let the steam gently cook the eggs, about 2 mins. Add to beef sandwich.

Very Very thin

Fry your egg in the same pan....oh my yum

Serve with hand cut fries

Carlos sometimes adds cheese

This is my ultimate best, mustard, hot sauce, egg no cheese :)

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