If in the past its consumption was only associated with festive days and an area of the country, today there are several times and places to eat it. suckling pig outside Bairrada??
From North to South of the country, there are several restaurants to enjoy this gastronomic delight, which is an excellent ambassador of the best food in Portugal. And, for those times when you don’t feel like leaving the couch, why not enjoy this delicacy in the comfort of your home?
Obviously, no one disputes the “paternity” of the region of Bairrada as far as the piglet is concerned. But the truth is that this has already become a dish that has crossed regional borders, entering the national gastronomy script.
This is why it is possible to eat high quality roast suckling pig all over the country, most of the time with the designation “à bairrada” clearly visible. Throughout the country, roast suckling pig is a delicacy that very few people can resist.
7 places to eat roast suckling pig outside Bairrada
Monte dos Leitões (Guimarães)
In the city where Portugal was born, good suckling pig is also eaten, namely in Monte dos Leitões, where this dish is prepared with all the rigor that the traditional method requires.
The suckling pig comes from a supplier in Bairrada and is then roasted in a wood oven, as desired.
The restaurant offers the take away to enjoy this repast at home.
Manjar dos Leitões (Póvoa de Varzim)
In a modern building, on the edge of the old national road 13 and with parking at the door is Manjar do Leitões. This is the place to eat suckling pig in Póvoa de Varzim.
“The piglets are a good size, roast in their own ovens with the right seasoning, heat and time, for lunch and dinner, and arrive at the table with crispy skin, soft meat, delicious flavor, accompanied with fries thin, also crispy, and salad”. It is the promise of space, which has already made our mouths water.
You can take the opportunity to place your order through the restaurant instagram or through the website. This ensures that piglet is available to satisfy your appetite.
Zé Pacheco (Gondomar)
Located in Baguim do Monte, very close to the center of Porto, “O Zé Pacheco” has been a national reference in the manufacture and sale of roast suckling pig for over 30 years.
The adventure began with the sale of live piglets at the fairs in the north. Later, the founder, José Gadelho Castro, decided to find a space to start making the delicacy, in what was considered a very innovative action. Today, it is one of the reference spaces in the Greater Porto region.
The restaurant offers this true delight to eat at home. either on a take away – with a 5% discount if you order online – whether for deliveryin municipalities of Greater Porto.
Rui dos Leitões (Coimbra)
This restaurant is a traditional-looking house with large rooms, where you can enjoy an excellent suckling pig from Bairrada, considered the local specialty, as well as Codfish à Casa, Costeleta de Vilho or Bife à Casa.
With a live weight oscillating between six and eight kilos and at a tender age (between a month and a half month old), the piglet leaves its mother’s milk to become a prepared delicacy so that you can enjoy its great flavor.
The main dishes that make up the Rui dos Leitões menu are also available for take awayincluding the famous suckling pig, of course.
- Address: Rua da Barraca – Fornos, 3020-923 Torre de Vilela
The Dom Leitão restaurant can be pleased with the quality of service it has been providing, which makes it one of the best places to eat roast suckling pig outside Bairrada.
To help with its fame, the restaurant also hosts some of the best Portuguese fado voices, which makes it possible to enjoy so many good national things in the same place.
Suckling pig, fried or roasted potatoes and a good wine to go with it can also be ordered to enjoy at home.
Leitões antique shop (Loulé)
In the south it is also possible to enjoy a delicious suckling pig, more specifically in Loulé, where the Antiquários dos Leitões restaurant is located.
The place has a small menu, which allows “to guarantee the quality of the dishes prepared here”.
In addition to suckling pig, you can also eat cod, steak and chicken, accompanied by a wide variety of quality wines.
And the best of all? Be on a take away, whether for delivery, without even having to leave your home. Better than this, only when you’re at the table enjoying such an incredible repast.
Avelino Azevedo, supported by his sons Artur and Fernando, decided in 1983 to found the Flor do Ave Restaurant in Trofa, with a small room with capacity for 100 people. The most diverse dishes of traditional Portuguese cuisine were served, with emphasis on the much appreciated “Bacalhau à Flor do Ave”.
Years later, they felt the need to expand their offer and added roast suckling pig as a new specialty. A successful recipe was launched, which continues to this day. It has 18 ovens from which 70 piglets can be roasted every two hours. And one of them can go straight to your house. The Flor do Ave restaurant home delivery service is also available. Simply place your order over the phone.
Why is Bairrada suckling pig so popular?
It all starts with the type of meat used. First of all, it is necessary to take into account that the ideal live weight of the animal is between 7 and 8 kg and the highest quality breeds are Bísaro and Malhado de Alcobaça.
Then comes the seasoning, whose tradition involves the use of garlic, salt, pepper, parsley, bacon, lard and bay leaf. After being well greased with the prepared paste, the seasonings are introduced, which must also be introduced in the belly and in the other empty parts of the animal. Then, the tears are sewn up and some punctures are made in the skin and thighs so that the skin is very crispy while it bakes.
In the cooking process, nothing better than using a wood oven, preferably also heated with bark or eucalyptus wood or vines, to a temperature of 300ºC. The piglet should be roasted slowly for about 2 hours on a laurel skewer, which should be rotated slowly so that it cooks evenly. During the process, the piglet should also be sprinkled with white wine from Bairrada, to make the skin crispier and prevent it from burning.
When cooked, suckling pig from Bairrada should be consumed hot or warm so that its aromas are more intense. But plating is also something very traditional and what gives this meal its fame. The suckling pig must be served with the skin facing upwards, without overlapping the meat and accompanied by slices of orange.
The preparation process for Bairrada suckling pig is complex, but it results in a final dish full of flavor and history.