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Pork Vindahloo - Goa, Vacation with Besties

Last week I was sorting through some old photographs & found some photos of a holiday I took to Goa with my besties from school. Such a memorable time, we were young adults starting our careers, saving up every penny for this vacation. 5 days of sea, sun, good food, and great friends!

Goa was once an important Portuguese Colony in the East. The Portuguese influence has been well ingrained in the Goan culture, especially the life of "SUSEGAD", which come from the Portuguese word SOSSEGADO meaning quiet. It's about living life at your own pace, taking time about everything. This philosophy also resonates in some of their classic signature dishes like Pork Vindaloo. The original dish knowns as Carne de Vinha d'alhos has become the quintessential Vindahloo in the Catholic Goan cuisine. Influenced by the early Portuguese settlers, who brought this recipe and method of cooking meat from the Portuguese islands of Madeira, where meat was cooked in a blend of wines, vinegar and garlic to enhance the shelf life. The Portuguese also brought the art of vinegar manufacturing to Goa. The local Goan communities used a naturally acidic fruit - tamarind, which grew abundantly in the surroundings.

This Goan Pork Vindahloo is a fiery blend of spices, tamarind & vinegar, leaving a tingling trail of tanginess, a little nudge of heat & bursts of flavors in your mouth as you savor each morsel. A beautiful piece of organic pork urged me to cook the famous vindahloo. Works best with a little fatty pork, marinated in malt/red wine vinegar (I used red wine vinegar), tamarind pulp, cumin, coriander, mustard, chilies, garam masala, a pinch of sugar, cooked low & slow. This is a dish that keeps well for a few days in the refrigerator (tastes delicious eaten the next day, and exceptionally delicious two days later - if there's any left overs!), and also freezes well for upto at least 3 months! My vindahloo was accompanied by white basmati rice & a tempered cabbage and carrot slaw garnished with lime juice, fresh cilantro & crushed roasted peanuts.

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