How to cook Alheira Portuguese Sausage

alheiraAlheira derives its name from the Portuguese word “alho” meaning “garlic. The Alheira was was originally a garlicky, pork-free sausage said to have been originated by the Portuguese Jews during the time of the Inquisition. The Jews used chicken instead of pork in the sausage to throw off suspicion that they weren’t Christians.

Today, you will find the sausage made with lots of garlic, spices, pork, chicken or other meats and sometimes even salt cod is used.

You can buy the sausage online and at Portugalia Marketplace which will ship to you.

portuguese Sausage Sampler

Instructions for cooking:

Note: The sausage is smoked so don’t worry about it being raw. We cook the sausage to heat it and to obtain a nice crispy skin to obtain it’s garlicky flavor.

Note: Cook on low heat, or you may find that it will break apart and and ooze out the filling. However if it does, don’t worry because it’s still delicious.

  1. Rinse and dry the sausage with paper towels and set aside to completely dry.
  2. Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a small skillet on low heat.
  3. Place the sausage in the oil, cover and cook for about 5 minutes. Turn over on each side until you achieve the nice crispy skin. You may have to turn over once in a while.
  4. Slice carefully with a sharp knife and serve with crusty Portuguese bread.


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