New Portuguese Table

Order The New Portuguese Table on and Barnes & Noble.

Read reviews and press | Ask David questions about the book

First Book/Julia Chid Award teaser

Food photography by Nuno Correia / Design by Stephanie Huntwork

Bread Chapter

Bread chapter opening page

Rissois de Carne (Beef Turnovers)

Recipe layout for Beef Turnovers (Rissóis de Carne)


Nestled between the Atlantic Ocean and Spain, Portugal is today’s hot-spot vacation destination, and world travelers are enthralled by the unique yet familiar cuisine of this country. The New Portuguese Table takes you on a culinary journey into the soul of this fascinating nation and looks at its 11 surprisingly different historical regions, as well as the island of Madeira and the Azores, and their food culture, typical dishes, and wines. This book also showcases Portugal’s pantry of go-to ingredients, such as smoked sausages, peppers, cilantro, seafood, olive oil, garlic, beans, tomatoes, and bay leaves — all beloved by Americans and now combined in innovative ways.

In The New Portuguese Table, David Leite provides a contemporary look at the flavorful food of this gastronomic region, sharing both the beloved classics he remembers from cooking at his grandmother’s side, such as Slowly Simmered White Beans and Sausage, as well as modern dishes defining the country today, like Olive Oil–Poached Fresh Cod with Roasted Tomato Sauce. With nearly 100 full-color photographs and a contemporary perspective, The New Portuguese Table is the handbook to the exciting cuisine of Portugal.

Media Inquiries

Kate Tyler
Clarkson Potter
(212) 572-2551
ktyler [at] randomhouse [dot] com

What people are saying about  recipes in The New Portuguese Table

Sea Bass with Fennel and Orange
This sauce is so lovely. The proportions of the sauce are perfect; it’s really a great combination of flavors. It comes together so quickly, then comes out so pretty! Perfect for any night of the week.

Skate with Leeks in a Saffron Broth
I used rock cod and red peppers. The [saffron] taste remained delicate, yet was rich and pronounced. It was certainly delicious and dinner-party worthy. Definitely goes into the do-again list.

Grilled Shrimp with Piri-Piri Sauce
Well, isn’t this the best quick shrimp dish ever! Having made the piri-piri sauce in advance (a couple weeks ago, as directed), I threw in the shrimp in the morning. They went on the grill for a few minutes before dinner, and there we had it! A salad tossed together and dinner was served. I did put a little bowl of piri-piri sauce out, but the shrimp had absorbed so much flavor, it wasn’t even touched.

Grilled Chicken Breasts with Spicy Coconut Sauce
I started marinating the chicken breasts the night before, so they were in more than 24 hours. The taste was wonderful! With the long marinade, the chicken really absorbed the flavors. I have to say that this dish wasn’t what I imagined to be Portuguese flavors. We certainly see Portuguese influence in dishes from around the world, and it only makes sense that there would also be some cross-pollination.

Cheese-Stuffed Pork Tenderloin
If there is anything that outshines the compelling smell of the amped-up red pepper paste as the tenderloin hits the skillet, it’s got to be the taste of the pork, with the sauce on the outside and the cheese on the inside. I served roasted carrots and turnips on the plate, and a green salad on the side. A complete winner for the senses and a worthwhile dinner party dish, to be sure.

Scrambled Eggs with Asparagus and Fresh Cod
Creamy eggs with onions, garlic, asparagus, and fried potatoes, are placed atop the spears of asparagus and make a soft landing for the seared cod. I used the suggested herb oil from page 40, which consisted of a bouquet from the garden heated in Tuscan olive oil for 8 to 10 minutes. This was a very nice addition and I used more of the oil for roasting vegetables at dinner time. All in all, a lovely meal for brunch, or anytime.

Punched Potatoes
Why are these potatoes so creamy? Leite mentions the creamy texture in the intro to the recipe, but I wasn’t expecting anything different from a usual roasted potato. Does the salt on the skin do something? Anyway, I don’t know the answer, but I loved these potatoes and the technique.

Baked Custard Tarts
Just fantastic. Not completely 100% authentic but close enough and utterly delicious. The dough is a little fussy to prepare but well worth the effort.

All reviews courtesy of members of Eat Your Books.


  1. Hi, David, and congratulations on the book! It often takes foreigners like us to come in and shake up the status quo. Cortes de Cima did it for wine in Portugal, and you seem to be doing it with food! Do we really have to wait until August to get hold of it?!

      1. Pete, I have. I visited Tomás at his vineyard in the Douro, and he poured me some. It’s an amazing wine. It was crush time, so it was a bit cool, and we sat on his terrance overlooking the infinity pool and the hills and river beyond. It was exquisite.

    1. Hi Carrie. Yes, sadly we do have to wait until August for the book. But I hope it’s worth the wait! Cortes de Cima is mentioned in the book, as it produces some of the best wines coming out of Portugal.

  2. Congrats, David. Love the cover, the photos and style…can’t wait to get my hands on your new book.

  3. Most of my knowledge of modern Portuguese cuisine comes from the episode of “No Reservations” when Anthony Bourdain went there.  I can’t wait to see some teaser excerpts either here or on your Amazon page.

    1. My partner and I have recently moved to Lisbon from California to live like true Lisboetas. Love the beautiful architecture, history, climate, and warm friendly people too.! We are both foodies having had restaurants in San Francisco and much experience consulting in the industry. Indeed, Mr. Bourdain brought a whole lot of positive attention to Portuguese food. That being said, the current culinary state of Portuguese cooking overall is for the most part sadly lacking in originality and flavor. Indeed at times poorly cooked and lacking proper basic culinary techniques and not at all like other Mediterranean cuisines. Actually, rather old style Germanic.The locals love their boiled potatoes and soggy veggies. It is really a surprise given all the fantastic and fresh seafood, meats, and produce that is to be found here. On a positive note, the inexpensive wine, cheese, and baked goods are fantastic!

      1. Gregory, say hello to the Portuguese Paradox. There’s a schism in the social and culinary spheres in the country. You have to keep in mind that Portugal was under the dictatorship of Salazar until mid-20th century. It affected an already poor country. I remember my father and our family telling stories of crushing poverty and lack of resources, such as electricity and telephone, that didn’t arrive until the late ’60s and early ’70s. My grandfather was regularly sending huge crates of clothing and supplies back to the Old County to help out. Without a lot to eat, there wasn’t much focus on cuisine.

        Only in the past 30 years or so has the country started healing, and only in the past 10 or so that chefs started to bring worldly flavors and techniques back to the country. But as Chef Fausto Airoldi said to me, the Portuguese will walk miles and miles for a traditional pot of boiled meats and potatoes instead of crossing the Avenida Infante Dom Heníque, which divides Lisbon from Bica do Sapato, the restaurant that catapulted him to prominence at the beginning of the century. It’s as much a physical divide as a metaphorical one.

        Where I discovered some exciting food and cooking was in the homes of some of the younger Lisboetas. Dinner parties there took on the feel of a salon, with someone playing piano, a writer reading her work, others vehemently arguing politics. But peace convenes when they sit at the table. Give it time–it took me a while to see beyond the obvious. The best thing is you there right now–in the beginning of a culinary revolution that happened here in the ’60s.

        Oh, one last thing: Portugal isn’t a Mediterranean country and doesn’t consider itself to be one. When it comes to food, its eyes, palate, and wallets have been fixed on the Atlantic for hundreds of years, the Age of Discovery notwithstanding.

    2. I only saw one episode, and that’s where he took part in a pig slaughter, called a matança–very Old World. I’m not sure what else he’s covered. 

      1. My grandparents and mom and dad always did a matanca every year. Linguiça, blood sausage, head cheese…it was the best. A tradition that is no longer since they have all passed. It was a lot of work!

          1. Yes, David, you are correct. You have to raise a hog and have to know what you are doing. I was about 16 the last time my grandparents did a matança and that was 42 years ago! Sadly, they took that with them and we no longer have a need for that special tradition.

          2. Deb, I’ve never been to one (I’m kind of glad, I have to admit). But matanças maintained our family year after year, and for that I’m grateful.

      2. Hi David, just bought your book and should get it on Monday. [Tony Bourdain’s] “No Reservations” show was about the Azores and was fantastic. It starts in Fall River, Mass, where I live, which has the largest Azorean population outside of the Azores. My mother’s family is from there. We have the best Portuguese restaurants, markets, and bakeries of anywhere.

          1. We borrowed the book at our local library. It was amazing, since we lived in Fall River, MA and found all our favorite foods. This is one book we will be buying this month. Thanks, David.

Have something to say?

Then tell us. Have a picture you'd like to add to your comment? Attach it below. And as always, please take a gander at our comment policy before posting.