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Food and Drink in the Algarve, Portugal

Modern and Traditional Portuguese Recipes - Portuguese Steak

from Chef Carlos at Restaurante Navegador in Lagos, Algarve

Chef Carlos at Restaurante Navegador, Lagos Algarve with Algarve Retreats LtdChef Carlos:

Carlos was born in Lagos where his father was head chef at the Hotel De Lagos.  He is an excellent professional having gained all his experience, through many years of working together with famous chefs (including Michael Roux) on some of the world's top cruise liners.  He has been working for over 20 years in this profession.  Having returned to Lagos, he was manager of the Restaurant Veneza until, 4 years ago, he had the opportunity to go into partnership with Jose Malveiro and Jeremy Giddings in converting an old bar into the Restaurant Navegador.


Portuguese Steak:

This is one of John's favourite Portuguese meals.  The recipe varies from restaurant to restaurant with differences, for instance, in the amount of garlic, the amount of gravy and oil to gravy ratio. The ham is served on most of  the dishes but that and the egg are optional extras.  Here is Chef Carlos' recipe from one of our favourite restaurants, The Navegador.


Bay leaf

Portuguese steak from Chef carlos at Restaurante NavegadorGarlic


White wine



Parma ham

Sirloin steak

Sliced potatoes


Put the crushed garlic into a flameproof terracotta dish together with butter, bay leaf, white wine and a splash of Port, boil.

Slice potatoes and fry separately.

Fry the steak together with the Parma ham in a separate frying pan.

Put the steak into the terracotta dish with the sauce and add the fried potatoes round the edge.

Sprinkle steak and potatoes with a little vinegar.

Put the terracotta dish back on the stove and let it all heat through gently.

John's notes:

Notice the lack of quantities!  For 2 people I used the following:

3 cloves of garlic

2 bay leaves

A large knob of butter with some olive oil

A cup of white wine

6 ozs of sirloin or rump steak

2 slices of Parma ham, although I used smoked back bacon

3 medium potatoes

I also added a good splash of white wine vinegar to the sauce to add piquancy. The meat juices were also added and the whole lot reduced to a thicker consistency.

I made the sauce in a separate pan and then made the final dish in two oven proof serving dishes and warmed them in the oven. The fried eggs were added just before serving.


If you would like to know more about Portuguese Food and Drink, why don't you dip into our Restaurants in the Algarve section and our series of articles on Portuguese Wines and Ports.  We also feature some Traditional Portuguese Recipes and a glossary of useful Portuguese food & drink words and phrases

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