And it has become easier and cheaper to buy foreign ingredients in Lisbon in recent years. "Here we have Pérola do Arsenal
, which has been selling codfish and all kinds of pulses for years, and that's where I can find things that usually I had to ask my grandmother or uncles to send me from Cabo Verde or other places", he reveals.
Martim Moniz is also a stopping point. "You spend 10 minutes of your time talking with the shop owner, and he'll explain the whole shop to you", he adds. "But if your goal is to find Sumak, this spice only exists in Lisbon at Mercado de Arroios. "You can run all other stores, and you won't find it." Now we know [wink].
Even though different cultures are crossing Lisbon's grocery shops and markets, there is something for this Kid that is possible to recreate but difficult to compare: canned tuna from Cabo Verde. "What I really asked my uncles and grandparents for was cans of tuna. For example, I make a dish from Cabo Verde, which is called Pastel de Milho (sweet potato, cornflour, and a chilli and tuna filling). (...) If I use Portuguese tuna, it's not the same. There, tuna tastes like shrimp."
Tiago was born and raised in Lisbon, but his Cabo Verdean roots always pop up a little "here and there" whenever he cooks. Although it is difficult to reproduce sea dishes with seafood (much cheaper there), there is always room to inspire and recreate. Therefore, the book Cozinha de Cabo Verde, by Maria de Lourdes Chantre, is always in his backpack.