This delicious sandwich is synonymous with festivals, fairs and carnivals in Portugal's other capital city, Porto. Although the Bifana sandwich can be found all over the country, in Porto, the pork is shaved razor thin and served drenched in it's own delicious cooking sauce. It is also very boozy, made with no less than 4 different types of alcohol. Is it delicious? You bet it is. Wash it down with an ice cold "fino", that's a draught beer in the local lingo.
The only thing I do differently is not cook the lemon in the sauce. Some people do and swear it comes out fine, others say it makes the sauce taste bitter. I agree with the latter. The sauce is much "brighter" by adding just the lemon juice in the end. The lemon's white pith is to blame for the bitterness, so I prefer to leave it out.
Make it as hot as you like with some hot piri-piri sauce and slap it all between a crusty Portuguese "papo-seco", lingo for bread roll. Can't find any...feel free to use any crusty roll you like. I used an olive ciabatta today.
Happy Friday xoxo
Bifanas à Moda do Porto ❦ Pork Cutlet Sandwich Porto Style
I usually put the pork in the freezer for 20-30 minutes to solidify a bit. That makes it easier to slice.
Alternatively, ask your butcher to slice it as thin as he can. At home pound the pieces with a meat mallet.
In Portugal, lots of people use a meat slicer, like the ones used to cut ham, but obviously not all of us have one.
1,500 kg. Pork leg meat, sliced razor thin
60 ml. Extra virgin olive oil, or 2 tbsp. Lard
250 ml. White wine
330 ml. Beer, like Sagres, Super bock or Stella Artois
50 ml. Port wine, ruby or tawny
25 ml. Whiskey or brandy
2 tbsp. Sweet paprika
2 Bay leaves
1 Lemon, juice only
6 Cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
1 Tomato, quartered
1 Chicken stock cube
1 Tbsp. Coarse sea salt, or to taste
Fresh white pepper to taste
Portuguese piri-piri sauce, Make mine, if you can find any.
If not, brands such as Tabasco or La Cholula,
(I love this one), are just as good.
This recipe takes no water.
Keep it at a low simmer, covered for an hour. Meat should be super tender and plenty of sauce left.
In a large pot, on low heat, add olive oil and/or lard if using
Add garlic and gently saute for a minute. Be careful not to let garlic burn.
Add rest of ingredients, except lemon juice. Bring to a boil.
Boil for about 5 minutes uncovered. After 5 minutes, lower heat to a simmer, cover and let cook 1 hour.
After an hour, add lemon juice, stir and serve generously in crusty bread.
Here I leave you with multiple sandwich shots...;)