Batateira, botifarra, linguniça
Batateira, butifarra, linguniça The typical cured meats of Azaruja, near Évora-the only place in Portugal where these sausages are known and eaten-are produced only in the homes of Azaruja’s oldest and most traditional families. These products are essentially unknown outside of Azaruja, the most populated and industrialized division of the municipality of Évora, home since the 19th century to cork factories built by the English and the Catalans. These cured meats represent a unique heritage, but risk disappearing because of very strict hygiene regulations, established with little respect for tradition. The cured meats are produced seasonally using ingredients from the region – Alentejo black pig (known outside Azaruja as Iberian black pig), spices, bread -, generally by the grandmothers and mothers of Azaruja’s most traditional families. They are made during the time when pigs are slaughtered, generally between December and February, according to recipes that have been passed down orally from generation to generation for over 150 years. The cured meats are produced in the traditional home kitchens, which always have a typical Alentejan fireplace. The Azaruja cured meats are only eaten with homemade Alentejan bread. Below is a brief description of the different Azaruja cured meats: Batateira: The essential ingredients are pork fat, cooked potatoes, garlic, pepper, salt and pork casing. The length of the batateira varies between 25 and 50 cm.It is eaten after being smoked over holm oak, cork oak or olive wood in a traditional fireplace, then cooked over a slow flame. Botifarra: Based on pork (ears, pork fat scraps, snout and head), salt, pepper and intestines, which are stuffed with the sausage mixture. It is a local adaptation of the botifarra brought by the Catalans who settled here in the 19th century, drawn by the cork trade. The length of a botifarra ranges from 15 to 20 cm. The minced meat is cooked but the sausage is neither dried nor smoked; in fact it is commonly eaten within the two weeks following its production and is kept in the refrigerator. Linguniça: Ingredients: ground pork (leg and fat from the head), garlic, salt, pepper and tripe. The length of a linguiça generally varies from 15 to 20 cm. Linguniça is commonly eaten raw, after around two months of air-drying.