The Francesinha is one of the most typical delicacies in the city of Porto.

According to legend, the first Francesinha was born in the “A Regaleira” brewery, on Rua do Bonjardim, around 1950.

The protagonist of the preparation of this recipe was Daniel David Silva, an emigrant in France. Daniel David Silva was inspired by a French sandwich called “croque-monsieur”, adapting it to Portuguese flavours and taste and including meat and cheese.

Daniel David Silva gave the name “Francesinha”, because, on the one hand, it is an adaptation of the French sandwich and, on the other hand, it is a way to remember the French women, who were more daring and spicy than the Portuguese women from the 1950s.


  • 4 slices of bread
  • 8 slices of cheese
  • 2 thin beef steaks
  • 2 fresh sausages
  • 2 “linguiças”
  • 2 slices of ham


  • 1 onion
  • 2 beers (33cl)
  • 4 spoons (soup) of tomato pulp
  • 0,5 dl of brandy
  • 0,5 dl of Port Wine
  • 2 bay leaf
  • Salt and pepper
  • Piripiri
  • Olive oil
  • 2 spoon (soup) cornstarch


  1. To start this recipe, prepare the sauce: peel the onion, chop it coarsely, pour into a saucepan, add the olive oil, salt and the bay leaf, bring to the heat and cook until golden brown. Add the tomato pulp and the beer and bring to a boil. Add the brandy and port and bring to a boil. Remove the bay leaves, add one or two spoons of cornstarch, and mix with the mixer. Place for another 5 min on low beat.
  2. Cut the fresh sausages and “linguiças” in half and season them with salt and pepper. Also season the steaks with salt and pepper. Grill the steaks, fresh sausages and “linguiças”.

3. Lightly toast the slices of bread and distribute two slices to each plate. Cover with a slice of ham, then add the steak. Add the fresh sausage and “linguiça” and add the other slice of bread. Add the 4 slices of cheese on top of each set, bake at 200ºC until melted. Remove and place the sauce on top. If you wish, you can fry an egg and place it on top of the sandwich, before adding the sauce.

Written by Maria Luisa Pereira

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *