Through a series of very fortunate events, Rob found himself surrounded by Portuguese culture as a result of his soccer friends. As a result we were introduced to the bifana- an incredibly versatile pork cutlet sandwich. Need a post-game snack? Bifana. Dinner? Bifana. Lunch? Bifana.
Served with a fried potato of some sort (shoestring fries are a good one), this is a quick (once marinated) meal for all occasions. It’s best on crusty Portuguese rolls.
- 1.5lb boneless pork cutlets, cut thin
- 1 cup dry white wine + 1/4 cup
- 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 tablespoons pimento paste, divided (1 and 1)
- 1/2 teaspoon Spanish paprika (divided into two quarters)
- 1/4 teaspoon piri-piri sauce (or to taste for heat)
- Fat for frying
- If desired, pound pork cutlets with a meat mallet.
- In a mixing bowl, combine one cup wine, vinegar, garlic, bayleaves, one tablespoon pimento paste, paprika, and piri-piri sauce. Mix well.
- Place pork cutlets into a Ziploc bag. Pour prepared marinade over pork. Using Archemedes’ Principle, displace air in bag and seal.
- Refrigerate overnight at minimum. Turn bag whenever so inclined, though if the air is properly removed the need is minimal.
- When ready to prepare, sauté pork in fat (butter or lard) in a large skillet. Work in small batches, create a golden brown crust if possible.
- (OPTIONAL) When pork is done, drain off the fat and deglaze pan with wine. Add remaining tablespoon pimento paste and paprika along with salt and pepper as desired. Bring to a boil and return pork to pan.
- Serve on crusty Portuguese rolls. Add sautéed onions, peppers, and cheese as desired.