monte-mar monte mar

Monte Mar

If you have never been into a restaurant on the road to Guincho beach, this is your chance to try one, right here. The Monte Mar at the Mercado da Ribeira is a scaled-down version of the original one on the coast road outside Cascais – which in the opinion of Time Out is the best restaurant in that area – offering almost everything except the ocean breakers. There is fish and shellfish from the Atlantic, of course, but also that classic Cascais dish: filetes de pescada com arroz de berbigão (hake fillets with cockles rice).

Time Out says “Being lucky enough to catch a day when the waves crash before you as you eat locally caught prawns, warm and salty, is an almost religious experience. And then those hake fillets – fat and shining – with rice with cockles and a fantastic tartare sauce … this is a dish that should be classed as national heritage.”

Recipe

Gambas al ajillo

One of locals’ favourite snacks, above all to pick at from a shared plate before digging into a main fish dish. Just as it is served at Monte Mar. The prawns used for the recipe, as one of the restaurant’s chefs explains, should be of medium size: bought whole and frozen, they are shelled by hand and the heads removed. The prawns are then well seasoned just with fine salt. To cook them, first heat a dash of olive oil with two cloves of peeled, crushed garlic and a whole malagueta pepper in a frying pan. When the oil is nice and hot, put the prawns in to fry until they colour on both sides. As soon as they have been fried to the ideal degree, splash over a bit of white wine and stir until it reduces and evaporates. The final touch is a spoonful of butter, added after almost all the wine has evaporated, to give the sauce a creamy texture. You need to stir the butter in well. Finally, served with chopped parsley on top.

Ingredients

FROZEN PRAWNS (40/50 GRADE)
FINE SALT
OLIVE OIL
GARLIC
MALAGUETA PEPPER
WHITE WINE
BUTTER
PARSLEY

Gambas al ajillo