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Summer RoundUp #4: Portugal, Viz from “Desperate HouseViz”

There is a rule, and every time there is an exception. Viz, blogger at Desperate HouseViz is the exception. This is because she is the only 100% Made in Italy between all bloggers of the Summer Roundup, and it is also because she is an exceptional girl, an Italian expat to Lisbon for love, cheerful, fun and a great supporter of Inter! She’s one of the first foodbloggers I get to know, with whom I  soon started to chit chat and laugh, I can call her a friend of long standing. Her blog is a hymn to life, curiosity and desire to experiment with cuisines from all around the world. This is Viz, now I give her the word:

A while ago, Giulia asked me to participate to her summer initiative and prepare a guest post. Wooow, I thought, I’m not even from another country… I just an Italian expat! But Giulia explained me the whole idea, she wanted me to explain what is summer in Portugal. I was just back from Algarve and I was still feeling like swimming into all tones of blue. First I thought of a completely different post from the one you are about to read. (N.d.A. Have a look at her Flickr set) .

I decided to tell you how’s summer in Lisbon, one of the most visited capitals of Europe. This is an amazing city with a spectacular light, it makes you feel like buying a reflex and go around to take pictures of all the incredible details. This is what I do in summer in my free time, I walk through Lisbon and I try to capture her beauty.

Lisbon transforms in summer in a big, huge esplanada, that means outside coffee tables. Since ever, the most visited esplanadas are the one on top of the 7 hills of the city, the miradouros (sightseeing points) and the historical kiosks’ ones.

The kiosks are in some cases 100 years olda and after quite a long time of abandonment, they have become fashionable again in 2009 thanks to 2 young Portuguese investors. Tradition is safe and people can finally enjoy typical drinks as leite perfumado (scented milk), boiled milk with cinnamon, lemon and sugar, served extra chilled.

Up – Web source (Lisboa Praça Camões 1908) and Viz’s shot (Lisbona Praça Camões, 2010) – Above – Web source (Lisboa, Praça do Príncipe Real, 1908) and Viz’s shot (Praça do Príncipe Real, 2009)

Many times, when asking an imperial (1/2 pint draught beer, Portuguese don’t like pints, they get warm and not fizzy…) you’ll receive a free small plate of tremoços (lupini beans). In Portugal there is a long beer “war” on two fronts, I’d say 50% of the population likes Sagres the most and the other 50% Super Bock. After innumerate trials (I had to, this decision can influence friendships!) I can say that I prefer draught Sagres and bottled Super Bock.

The most beloved esplanada combination is imperial and caracois, beer and snails. Snails are a very big deal in Portugal, you can buy it everywhere and in summer there is a Snail’s festival for a week, where people can try full snails’ menus, from soup to pizza… I can’t. Seriously can’t. But if you are curious and you want to try…


  • 1, 5 kg small snails
  • 2 table spoons of e.v. olive oil
  • 1 handful of fresh oregano
  • 1 laurel leaf
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1 onion
  • salt and black pepper

1. Wash the snails more and more times, until transparent water is running through.

2. Put the snails in a deep pan with cold water. Add oil, laurel, oregano. garlic and the finely chopped onion.

3. Boil the snails in the topless pan for 30 minutes. While cooking, eliminate the foam on top of the water.

4. Add salt and quite a lot of freshly ground black pepper.

5. After another 30 minutes, turn off the heat. Serve tepid, with some of their broth.

And now, pretend to be in Lisbon listening to this modern fado!

Before leaving you and let you book your flight to Lisboa, communication service!

Just finished the vote time for HHDD event, our winner is Reb from So Long and Thanks for all the Food! Congrats! Now it’s your turn!

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