ATP – 1 Dec 2017 – olá!

Here is All Things Portugal for 1st Dec 2017.


The Portuguese for hello! is olá. Like other languages, Portuguese has terms for good morning, good afternoon and good evening, but I’m trying to give you as few words as you need to survive with Micro-Portuguese. Olá can be used for hi! at any time of the day.

The accent in olá happens to be an acute accent (you don’t need to know that), and 9 times out of 10 it is used to tell you which bit to stress (that comes in jolly useful!).

Olá is pronounced oh-la.

Saying ‘olá’ will get you a response from even the toughest Portuguese peasants who do not understand English.


Bifanas can be made out of beef, chicken or pork, but most of time in the Algarve, they are pork. Here the pork is tasty and very cheap.

A bifana is nothing more than very thinly sliced, fried pork, put into a fresh Portuguese roll. There is no buttering of the roll. Add condiments of your choice.

I have looked online for bifana recipes, and it made me laugh. English ‘experts’ seem to think a bifana is complex, stuffed with tens of ingredients, and take over an hour to make. The truth is bifana is a staple in Portuguese cafés, and trust me, they are simple, inexpensive, and quick. This is fast food Portuguese style. You can even get a bifana in McDonald’s here.

Portuguese bread is made with hard wheat. UK bread is made with soft wheat. It makes a big difference to the taste, but don’t worry about it. If UK bread is what you like, go for it. A nice roll, lightly fried thin pork slice, perhaps with some mustard or spicy sauce to complement the bifana.

As it happened, I marinated ours in a little white wine (to tenderise the pork) plus a sprinkling of garlic, just for a few minutes. I rate my effort about a 6 out of 10 – I must try harder.


This this the Estádio do Dragão – the Stadium of the Dragon.

It is the home to FC Porto, and tonight they are taking on four times champions Benfica. It is one of two matches today to decide which football team has a Merry Christmas, and which does not.

Welcome to All Things Portugal!


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