these are the posts tagged ‘traditional sweets’:

folar de olhão

folar is a traditional portuguese easter cake — the equivalent to hot cross buns. there are several different types of folar here in algarve, but they’re usually a layered cake, cooked in small pots. they do a delicious version of it in olhão that is so good they sell it year-round in supermarkets!

granted, it doesn’t look like much from the outside, but when you slice through it…

… magic! layers over layers of moist cinnamon-y goodness, compacted over time under a thick syrup. it might be ugly, but it’s oh-so-good. don’t knock it until you try it!

pão de rala

one of the good things of going all the way to the top of alentejo for the boy’s flight, was the opportunity to visit évora, an oasis of history and culture in the middle of the region’s golden prairies. naturally, we couldn’t let the occasion pass without trying some pão de rala — a cake that the nuns in a local convent used to make. it’s a rather deceptive cake, as it looks just like bread and olives from the outside…

pão de rala

… but when you break it open…

pão de rala

… magic! :D the little “olives” are made of marzipan and cocoa, and the bread’s filling consists of tons of egg yolks, sugar, almonds and chila (fig-leaf gourd).

as you would expect, it was a-ma-zing, really delicate and soft… though a bit on the heavy size, as sweets go. ahem. turns out, in our naive enthusiasm, we bought a whole pão de rala, which i suspect was meant to be shared with a group of people.

“perhaps a small slice would have been a more sensible portion”, said the boy.

pão de rala

i regret nothing! :)

rebuçados da régua

so, before the hiatus, i was going to tell you what we got as prizes in lieu of medals, when we ran in douro back in may. can you guess?


rebuçados da régua, of course! :D they’re an old-fashioned and very typical local confectionery, which is guaranteed to bring back nice memories to everyone who ever traveled in douro’s train line. some old ladies there still make them, keeping the tradition alive.


there are 9 identical sweets in each transparent bag, all wrapped in paper. the sweet is rather basic, made of melted sugar and honey, plus a few secret ingredients, they say. the result is a hard candy that looks almost like a huge amber gemstone. they’re beautiful!


aaah… tastes like nostalgia! :)

a tripa do furadouro

the boy is originally from oliveira de azeméis, which isn’t far from the coast. the nearest beach is called furadouro, and it is famous for a special kind of “beach dessert” which he had never tried before: the tripa! we’d been hearing about this tripa (which means gut in portuguese) for such a long time that by the time we finally tried it last winter, it had reached epic fame proportions… could it live up to our high expectations?

turns out, yes! especially the one filled with ovos moles… it was delicious! the dough is a mix between a crepe and a softened wafferish cookie which is folded over your selected filling… it was soft and warm and just the thing for a windy cold the day by the sea! can’t wait to go back and try the one with condensed milk mmmm…

ovos moles

mural in aveiro

this blog is missing some serious food reviews. i am in portugal after all, and of all the places i’ve visited, i’ve never met another so brimming with yummy culinary deliciousness. thing is, portugal is also my “home by default”, meaning, the place we get lazy about moving our butts because we think we already know all there is to know. you know what? definitely not true.

like ovos moles, for instance, which i had never tried before. so let’s do this!
little barrels of ovos moles

before though, i should warn you that traditional portuguese desserts or sweets are known to be made of dozens of eggs and a ton of sugar, and ovos moles is no exception. moderate consumption is advised.
ovos moles’ origins are tied to several convents in the beira litoral region, where the nuns used the sweets to strengthen the patients. it is said that the reason most conventual sweets use lots of egg yolks is because the nuns used the egg whites to iron their clothes, making them whiter in the process :)
ovos moles, box

so, on a recent visit to aveiro, we got a box and took it home, to properly enjoy. aveiro is a river/seaside region, so ovos moles are wrapped in various shell motives and often offered in small boats or decorated barrels.
so many!

a shell of ovos moles

the outside layer is dry but melts in your tongue like the wafers they give in mass. the inside is where the sweet action is. it tastes of eggs and sugar, naturally, and one of this tiny things will be enough to kick your body into instant sugar rush :)
ovos moles!

so now you know! they’re quite nice so go get some if you’re in town! :)