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May 5, 2007 08:30 AM

Portugese Spices?

Does it exist? and Is there anywhere I can buy Portugese Spice in Montreal?

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  1. Portuguese cooking uses the same spices as other mediterranean or European cuisines. Are you looking for a spice mix Ă  la Club House?

    I guess the only specifically Portuguese "spice" I can think of is molho de piri piri (portuguese hot sauce). I reckon you can find it at La Vieille Europe.

    7 Replies
    1. re: SnackHappy

      Piri piri is also easy to make at home. Lots of recipes online. See, for example, the ones on the excellent Portuguese recipes page at Leite's Culinaria:

      1. re: carswell

        Thanks! Is this what most Portuguese restaurants marinate their chicken in?

        1. re: beckybee

          "Is this what most Portuguese restaurants marinate their chicken in?"

          No, as far as I know. For one thing, it would make the chicken far too fiery for some customers.

          I've not had much luck in getting specifics from Portuguese cooks. Even Maria, the cook at RĂ´tisserie Mavi who treats me like a member of the extended family, is tight-lipped when I ask for details. This much I've learned: the chicken is marinated in a mixture of herbs and spices and possibly some acidic liquid (lemon juice and/or vinegar and/or white wine is my guess). If the customer requests spicy, the bird is basted with piri piri toward the end of grilling. Piri piri is also served on the side.

          1. re: carswell

            There are lots of Portugese spices, including piri piri sauce, to be found at Soares supermarket on Duluth.

              1. re: carswell

                I noticed a jar of marinade for barbecued chicken, which was a Portugese product, on their shelves, for example. That might be useful in identifying the spices beckybee is looking for. Pimento paste, for example.

                1. re: Plateaumaman

                  S.A. at the corner of St-Urbain and Villeneuve is another little shop with a good many Portuguese seasonings, including a lovely pimento paste, or sauce, that seems homemade or at least locally made. It comes in (not very) hot and sweet. Would have bought some, but filled my bicycle bags with imported tinned Portuguese sardines, which were on sale. They also sell a very nice fresh goat's cheese in brine. These things are very reasonably priced. And they carry the Fernando's grain-fed chickens, the same one can buy at Fernando's - you know - it used to be Zinman's, a specialist in poutry and game sausages and meats.