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Being Vegan in the Alentejo

If you are looking for vegan and vegetarian options while traveling in Portugal, should you look at the Alentejo? Yes, absolutely! The food of the Alentejo is part of the Mediterranean diet, inspired by the dining habits of people who live around the Mediterranean Sea. It is a cuisine that is based on being completely natural, healthy, seasonal and balanced.

The diet is tied closely to local farms, as in fresh olive oil, vegetables, cereals, fruits and wines. Most restaurants are very accommodating though, and it’s worth asking if they could cook you something that’s vegan-friendly. And, there are also traditional vegetarian options in Alentejo cuisine, such as asparagus and tomato migas and açorda from the Alentejo, a bread stew with coriander. Being a vegan in Portugal is easy thanks to the government. By law, all public institutions, including government buildings, schools and medical centers, must offer at least one vegan option.

A few new dining vegan options: 

Hotels that offer Vegan dining options:

The cuisine of the Alentejo is influenced by a Mediterranean climate and heritage.  The Alentejo cuisine is unique in all of Portugal. It is a unique world of flavors, where olive oil, coriander and wheat bread make up traditional bread stews called açordas. Local Alentejo breads are rich, crusty and fresh. 

Or the variety of local wines produced in the varied climate and soils. In the Alentejo, a meal starts with a variety of appetizers.  Olives are a local staple, whether black or green, harvested from olive tree plantations along the Guadiana River Valley. So, the fresh bread dipped in olive oil, with a drop of vinegar is a treat. Other Alentejo wonders include roasted peppers, salad with onion and peppers seasoned with olive oil, and the hearty dish migas traditionally made using harder bread. Some typical Alentejo foods share recipes with nearby Spain, as in the case of gazpacho, a tomato-based soup served cold. 

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