Mention European food and the traditionalists will think of French high cuisine, the modernists will point to Basque kitchen ingenuity, and the hard-liners will try to draw your attention to Italian cucina povera, the cooking of the poor. But who mentions Portugal, a place that clamors for culinary attention every time I've visited in recent years? The abundance of fresh sea creatures from Portugal's extensive coastline and the fine pigs that have escaped the degradation given their species by industrial crap food conglomerates in the US have become the basis for Portugal's culinary Renaissance. Peter Morrell finds it all very alluring in his recent article for the Huffington Post: Central Portugal - A Culinary Surprise.
Another interesting article coming out of Lisbon has a kitchen "robot" as the protagonist of a make-your-own-food-and-save-money-while-eating-well Renaissance. The amazing Bimby is making culinary inroads with the Portuguese: Even in Straitened Times, Portugal Loves Its Bimby Cooking Robots.
"Ms. Brito said her family now spends a lot less for groceries. This is one of the main reasons Bimby's maker gives for the record sales. In Ms. Brito's home, mayonnaise and ketchup are both handmade. She can't remember the last time she bought a birthday cake or canapés for parties. If Bimby broke and had to get fixed, Ms. Brito said she would be lost."
And the German maker has no plans to introduce the Bimby, called a Thermomix in the rest of Europe, to the US. Sorry, it looks really interesting in this video. Chicken Chorizo Stew anyone?