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'Eat Smart in Portugal' - book review by Rosie Peddle

booksThe newest release of the internationally acclaimed Eat Smart culinary guidebook series is about Portugal and has obviously been written by two people who love the country and its food. From Michelin-rated restaurants to country-style home-cooking, and all the many offerings in between, all are given equal treatment and respect.

Sometimes when we travel to new places it is good to ask friends if they have been to our intended destination, and if they have any tips or recommendations for the basic requirements - shelter, nourishment and transport. Well, you can all relax, the nourishment part of your journey has been well taken care of, and the authors will become your friends. They want you to discover the food of Portugal for yourself, with the help of this guide, and for you to have your own tasting adventure.

This latest book follows the successful format of the series and starts with a section devoted to the history of Portuguese cuisine, which just happens to also give you a good run through the fascinating history of the country along the way. This book has been produced with appreciation for local knowledge and love of local ingredients, and the value of the contributions from the cooks and chefs of Portugal sings out from the pages.

Anyone visiting or living in Portugal will be lucky enough to get to know something of the food and dishes of the country. This book opens the door to a fuller range of national colours and flavours you can expect to find and encourages you to try, to taste and to buy. Whatever region or city you visit, there are special dishes and delicacies awaiting you. The Menu guide helps when ordering and the section of helpful phrases in English and Portuguese means you can do so with confidence.

The recipe section has come from the passionate cooks, chefs and food experts of Portugal who want to share their own knowledge and help you to recreate Portuguese dishes. These are tried and tested practical recipes which bring Portugal into your own kitchen and onto your dining table. Nothing is taken for granted, for example, you will get the basic inside know how on preparing that staple of Portuguese life, Salt Cod. Recipes for hearty soups, salt baked Sea Bass, clams with pork and the famous Pastéis de Nata are all included.

Portuguese cuisine deserves to stand on its own merits and has a special character, quite separate from that of neighbouring Spain. The Arab influence, the voyages of discovery and long experience with using the harvest of the seas have all left their mark, but, the fantastic talent on show in the new generation of chef owned restaurants show that Portuguese cuisine is alive and well. With this book you will have recommendations for restaurants and for dishes that reflect the full range of tastes on offer.

Talking about food is a national pastime so I must warn you that if you put this book on the table anywhere in the country, you will certainly have a warm welcome, and also the start of a fascinating conversation, your experience of Portugal will be all the better for it.

The Award-Winning Eat Smart Culinary Travel Guidebooks series is published by Ginkgo Press, Madison Wisconsin. There are currently fourteen countries covered by this series. They also organise culinary tours around the world.  www.eatsmartguides.com

Rosie Peddle, August 2017



'Eat Smart in Portugal - How to Decipher the Menu, Know the Market Foods & Embark on a Tasting Adventure  '

Ronnie Hess & Joan Peterson        160 PP. 5½” × 8½”. 8-Page Colour Insert, ​13 B/W Illus.
Paperback  ISBN 978-1938489-11-2
Available post free worldwide via The Book Depository  www.bookdepository.com

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