Grapes, egg and cheese on a wooden table

In the heart of the Alentejo, where the vast plains touch the sky and the land holds stories from time immemorial, a culinary tradition is born that speaks directly to the heart of those who try it.

Among the many treasures of this rich and varied cuisine, almece stands out not just as an ingredient, but as a symbol of the wisdom and sustainability that permeate rural life in the Alentejo.

Almece, the whey that remains after coagulation in cheese making, is a precious commodity on the Alentejo table. Far from being discarded, this nutritious and tasty liquid is the basis of recipes that embody the essence of “aproveitamento” cooking. In the Alentejo, it is taught from an early age that nothing goes to waste, and almece is living proof of this philosophy.

Used in a variety of recipes, almece is particularly prized for its versatility. It can be drunk fresh, as a nutritious drink, or used as an ingredient in soups that warm the body and soul on cold nights. But it is in atabefe, a comforting dish in which almece is simmered with sugar and cinnamon, that this ingredient reveals all its magic. By adding pieces of bread, it becomes a sweet soup that brings comfort and satisfaction, evoking childhood memories and moments spent around the table with the family.

This culinary tradition, rooted in necessity and creativity, shows the deep respect the Alentejo people have for the land and its resources. Almece is more than just an ingredient; it is a testimony to the harmonious relationship between man and nature, a connection that translates into dishes that are both simple and extraordinarily rich in flavor and history.

Thus, almece in the Alentejo is a celebration of rural life, an example of how ancestral wisdom can teach us valuable lessons about sustainability and respect for nature. By valuing this ingredient, Alentejo cuisine invites us to rediscover the pleasures of the table, where every taste is a story and every meal is a tribute to the land that feeds us.