Restaurant Miranda Marlene, Bragança, Portugal

Collard greens soup Bragança
We are always on the lookout for local, traditional restaurants where we tend to be the only foreigners and the food is rustic but super. Tourist destinations where the food has been adapted to the European palette, i.e. same old same old, is not what we want. And we ticked all the boxed with Miranda Marlene.

After wandering the streets of Braganca, we spotted a café with a lot of custom and I noticed that some tables inside had been set. In Portugal, local restaurants look just like bars or cafes, but they double as restaurants and we have had the most awesome food in many of them. Granted, we will try anything, if only once, so this does make things easier on oneself.
Inside the restaurant, Bragança
I asked if they did Menu del Dia (a daily menu) and she waffled off the menu in Portuguese (I didn’t understand a word) and so we just said yes. Throughout Portugal, you will find many places offering “Menu del Dia” or “Plato del Dia” (plate of the day) and there are always 2 choices, one is always with meat and the second is normally always fish. We always take one of each.

Today’s menu started with the ever present Caldo Verde Soup which is eaten throughout Portugal. It is often mistaken for the American Kale Soup, but this traditional soup is made with collard greens and not kale. Caldo Verde means Green Soup. It had a slice or two chorizo in it which I love. The soup was very good, could do with a bit more spice for me, but then I am a huge over-user of peri-peri sauce (the Portuguese hot sauce).
Salt cod with onions and potatoes
The two main courses were:
Bacalhau no Forno com Cebolada with potatoes
Feijoada with rice
Both are traditional Portuguese dishes and both were really good. The Bacalhau (salted cod) was fried and served with mild sweet and sour pickled vegetables and served with fried potatoes. My favourite. Feijoada is a bean and meat dish with all and every part of the pig thrown in! It is always good and differs slightly from region to region, and this version was no exception to the rule.
Feijoada Bean and meat dish
I was already full with these two courses and wasn’t going to have dessert, but when Joerg’s caramel mousse arrived, I ordered one too. I am not a big sweet eater, but if I do then really sweet! This was so caramelly and sweet, too die for (or is that from??!!).
Caramel mousse
We had wine and water, bread, three courses and all for €7.50 per person! The mind boggles. The place was packed to the brim with people waiting patiently for a seat. There was also a queue of people getting their food to go – you bring your own Tupperware if you want and so you save the planet a tiny bit from all the packaging. Well done Portugal.

I can recommend visiting this restaurant. If you want fancy, definitely don’t go here as it is very rustic. We go to restaurants for the food and atmosphere and here we weren’t disappointed. Thank you for a lovely meal and friendly service. We’ll see you again sometime for sure!

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