A Fork on the Road

Salt cod and tostones at a hybrid Hialeah restaurant


If you go

Place: Lisboa-Habana Portuguese & Cuban Cuisine

Address: 4590 W. 12th Ave., Hialeah

Contact: 305-512-1488, lisboahabana.com

Hours: 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Friday-Saturday, 11:30 a.m.-10 p.m. Sunday

Prices: Appetizers $3.99-$8.99, soups and salads $3.99-$10.99, entrees $11.99-$26.99


Clams in White Wine Sauce

This recipe adapted from Food.com is good served in small bowls as an appetizer with crusty bread to soak up the sauce.

1 tablespoon olive oil

2 slices prosciutto or Serrano ham, cut in strips

6 garlic cloves, smashed and minced

1/3 cup flat leaf parsley, chopped

1/4 teaspoon hot pepper flakes or to taste

1/2 cup dry white wine

2 pounds littleneck or other small clams

Heat oil in a skillet and fry ham until crisp, about 2 minutes. Remove and drain. Add garlic to pan with the parsley and pepper flakes and cook 1 minute. Add wine and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Add clams, cover and steam until clams open, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle with fried ham and more parsley. Makes 6 servings.

Per serving: 178 calories (21 percent from fat), 4.0 g fat (0.7 g saturated, 1.9 g monounsaturated), 47.5 mg cholesterol, 23.3 g protein, 7.1 g carbohydrate, 0.2 g fiber, 994 mg sodium.


There may be a thousand Cuban restaurants in Hialeah, but we only know of one that features Portuguese fare along with black beans and fried yuca.

Lisboa-Habana is in a strip mall and has murals of the El Capitolia in Havana and the St. Jerome Monastery in Lisbon. Raise a glass of vinho verde with grilled octopus or ropa vieja.

Armando Areias is from Guimaraes in northern Portugal. He studied management at St. Thomas University in Miami Gardens, and then worked his way up from bus boy to manager at Old Lisbon, owned by a hometown friend. He met Cuban-born restaurateur David Gonzalez over a roasted pig at Lighthouse Café on Key Biscayne. They became friends and joined forces to open Lisboa-Habana a year ago.

Bacalhau is called fiel amigo (faithful friend) in Portuguese and cooked over 300 ways. The stiff slabs of dried cod are soaked in several changes of water to remove the salt and served here grilled, deep fried, baked under melted cheese, stewed in cream or tomato sauce, scrambled with eggs and potatoes, cooked with rice, made into fritters and added to fish soup with vegetables.

Other dishes include clams in white wine and garlic sauce, grilled sardines, white bean and seafood stew, chorizo with peppers and chilled spiny lobster served out of the shell with pink mayo. Cuban dishes range from braised rabbit in Creole sauce to pork tenderloin stuffed with mashed green plantain.

Delicias de Fatima is egg custard that was first made by convent nuns to use the yolks left over from egg whites used to starch their habits. Wash down the dessert named after an apparition of the Virgin Mary with a glass of port or Cuban cafecito and give thanks for a sweet choice.

Linda Bladholm is a Miami food writer and personal chef who can be reached at lbb75@bellsouth.net.

Miami Herald

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